On the opening night of Memorial Day Weekend in 1971, men wearing fatigues began to gather at the Old North Bridge in Concord to protest the ongoing war which they had just returned home from fighting. Their plan was to camp overnight and then march all the way to Boston Common. Photographs of them crossing the bridge were splashed across the region’s newspapers. For the liberal press, these were the new Minute Men.
On a panel moderated by Elise Lemire, author of Black Walden and Battle Green, Vietnam, three Massachusetts Vietnam veterans recall why they chose to stage their protests against the Vietnam War at New England’s most storied battlefields, their decision on the second day of the march to emulate Thoreau by occupying the Lexington Battle Green without permission, and their reception in Concord when they were tried in Middlesex Court for civil disobedience. This panel with Vietnam veterans Bestor Cram, Christopher Gregory, and Lenny Rotman, will explore the role of memorialized battlefields, the principles of civil disobedience, and the role protest can play in healing moral injuries.
CAPACITY: 78 of 100 spaces available.
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