Megan Rice

Sister Megan Rice Released from Prison

Megan Rice

In 2012, Sister Megan Rice, along with two others, protested against nuclear weapons by sneaking onto a uranium-holding building and vandalizing it with blood.

In June 2012, 82-year-old Roman Catholic nun, Sister Megan Rice, was arrested with two others, Michael Walli (63) and Gregory Bertje-Obed (57). They snuck onto the Y-12 National Security Complex by cutting the barbed wire that surrounded the building. They took human blood and splashed it against the building before spray-painting a number of peace slogans onto the wall. They spent two hours “decorating” before the police showed up. They were charged for sabotage of the uranium-holding building. Sister Megan Rice received three years in prison, while the two men were given five years.

The peace activists are heavily anti-nuclear weaponry. They are a part of the Plowshares movement, a group of mostly Christian anti-nuclear protesters who encourage the removal of nuclear arms worldwide. Upon the arrest of Sister Megan Rice, and the others, the Society of the Holy Child Jesus, where the nun was involved, announced that they would remain firmly by her side. The group is vehemently against the US maintaining its hold on so much uranium. Y-12 houses enough uranium for the production of thousands of nuclear weapons. Sister Megan Rice says that it violates the global disbarment pledges, ultimately making “other countries feel compelled to have nuclear weapons.”

The Sixth US Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati felt that the choice to sentence them based on the charges for sabotage was a bit harsh. The judge ordered the sentence be given another look at, and a new sentence decided on. The order for their release came on Friday after Sister Megan Rice, Walli and Bertje-Obed’s attorneys requested an emergency release during the re-sentencing. Rice has been spending her time making visits and planning a big event for the anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

June 1, 2015 EDIT: A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that the Society of the Holy Child Jesus took part in Sister Megan Rice’s planning for protests. The Society, while supporting Rice and remaining committed to an anti-nuclear stance, does not condone illegal protests or any criminal activities.


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