Hunterdon County Democrat

Peace Exhibit Draws Flak In Flemington

Hunterdon County Democrat — Thursday, June 26, 2008

Flemington — An exhibit called "Eyes Wide Open: New Jersey," which illustrates the impact of the Iraq War on the state, has shortened its visit here amid controversy.

This exhibit features more than 70 pairs of combat boots in honor of the U.S. soldiers from New Jersey who have fallen in the Iraq War. A display of shoes represents the thousands of Iraqi civilian causalities.

The exhibit, sponsored by Hunterdon Peace Coalition and New Jersey Citizen Action, will be displayed on the steps of the old courthouse on Main Street on Saturday, 11 a.m.–3 p.m.

It was also supposed to be on display at the Flemington Woman's Club hall on Sunday, but that was canceled because of the controversy, said Peace Coalition co-chair Sharon Ransavage.

She said that the church group that rents the hall during that time had initially given permission, but asked to cancel after the reaction of some members of the public.

She said that, among other things, she has received anonymous phone messages labeling her and other members of the Peace Coalition as "traitors" and using offensive language.

She said that, in spite of the reaction of what she believes to be merely a vocal minority, the exhibit is in no way disrespectful of American soldiers, but rather recognizing the sacrifices they have made.

The exhibit is free, but donations are accepted. For details, call Hunterdon Peace at 806-3346.

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