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To the Best of Our Knowledge, A Matter of Conscience | [Jim Fleming]

To the Best of Our Knowledge, A Matter of Conscience

Everybody makes choices. Some of them matter for an hour, others for the rest of your life. For thousands of young people forty years ago, the choice was to go to war in Vietnam or accept the consequences of refusing.
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Publisher's Summary

In this hour, some people went to war, some went to Canada, and others did alternative service. Coleman went to prison for refusing to fight. His memoir, “Spoke” tells the story of how he decided.

Next, most young men during the Vietnam era faced a choice, whether or not to be drafted into the US Armed Forces. For Jim Fleming, and his friends Robert Cardinaux and Mark Peterson, the chose to become Conscientious Objectors. They worked together in alternative service as psychiatric aides.

Then, Bill Ayers was a member of the Weather Underground, which set off a series of bombs around the country in protest against the Vietnam War. Ayers insists he was not a terrorist, since his objective was never to kill people. He believes his own actions showed restraint in comparison with the enormity of the harm he believed the Vietnam War was causing.

After that, Bill Ayers was a member of the Weather Underground, which set off a series of bombs around the country in protest against the Vietnam War. Ayers insists he was not a terrorist, since his objective was never to kill people. He believes his own actions showed restraint in comparison with the enormity of the harm he believed the Vietnam War was causing.

Following that, imagine beginning your life's work at age 72. In the 1770's, Mary Delaney invented the medium we now call collage. Her collection of botanically-correct floral collages is today housed in the British Museum. Poet Molly Peacock fell in love with the work and the artist and has written a meditation on both and on late-life creativity.

And finally, novelist Tim O’Brien talks about the life-long consequences of the decisions the Viet Nam generation made in their twenties, and says it’s harder to effectively protest today. [Broadcast Date: January 24, 2014]

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