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Nonviolence Playlets - compiled by Walter Wink - page 2 / 29





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O’Gorman:  “I know, it’s so unfair.  They lock you up and then, when you

get out, make it impossible to support yourself without turning back to


Intruder:  “I can’t even get a place to live.  Honest, lady, I got

nowhere to go.”

O’Gorman:  “All right, I’ll give you clean sheets, but you have to make

your own bed on the couch downstairs.”

Narrator:  “The intruder went downstairs, and she sat up in bed

upstairs, wide awake and shaking for the rest of the night.  The next

day they ate breakfast together and he left.”  (Actors:  can you think

of a way to do this last part as part of the action?  Or we can leave it

to the narrator.)

O’Gorman comments that it was the element of surprise that disarmed the

intruder.  People who intend to do harm have a certain picture in their

mind as to what will transpire when they threaten others.  When the

people they attempt to rob or mug create a different picture, the

assailant has no other picture to put in its place.  So surprise is a

central element in nonviolent encounters.  [“Defense Through

Disarmament: Nonviolence and Personal Assault,” The Universe Bends

Toward Justice (Philadelphia: New Society Publishers, 1990), 241-47.]

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Peter Storey. Methodist Bishop of South Africa.  Setting: Bishop Storey

Africa was driving through Soweto when a group of carjackers stopped his


[Immediately he gets out and, hoping that at least one of the group

might be a

Methodist, and says, "You aren't going to shoot your Bishop, are you?"

Surprise turned

the situation immediately around.

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June at Riverside.  Setting:  Riverside Church in New York City.  June

Keener Wink is leaving pre-school, where she was teaching.  On her way

out, 2 boys come up behind her and stick a gun in her back.

Boys:  “Give us your money.”

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