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Sample Chapter

Chapters 1 and 2 of Venceremos


caneThis was back in 1970 when I went from wounded hero to deserter and headed up to Canada so as to stay out of prison. I was traveling with Sheri Cooper, who was set on joining a commune on Vancouver Island where some friends of hers from the Haight had gone on before. I'd met Sheri in Golden Gate Park right after I arrived in San Francisco from New York via Chicago, Madison, Wisconsin, Denver, and a few other towns. I'd been watching a theater group do some antiwar skits on a little stage they'd set up. The bits were funny but at the same time scary in how they caught the craziness that was the war.


I wondered if seeing the skit before I was drafted would have prompt-ed me to do more to stay out of the service. Probably not. I knew it was possible to resist the draft—I mean, Mohammad Ali had done it all over the front pages and the back pages of the News and the Post, so it wasn't a secret. But he had had the guts to stand up and take the punishment and I didn't. He was the Champ and gave it all up. I had nothing to lose and still couldn't do it.


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