By Chuck Strouse
By Scott Fishman
By Terrence McCoy
By Ryan Yousefi
By Ciara LaVelle, Kat Bein, Carolina Del Busto, and Liz Tracy
By Pepe Billete
By Ryan Yousefi
By Kyle Swenson
He is doing his best. He has printed up a postcard depicting Fonda wearing an Uncle Sam hat, pointing and saying, "I want YOU to abolish war." He distributes the postcard, which is conveniently preaddressed to Fonda and Turner, to potential supporters so they can lobby the pair. He has also prepared a petition directly aimed at Fonda, which includes requests such as "Jane -- we want you to pose for the statue of Freeda." So far he's gathered only a few signatures.
Finally, Gilbert has written Fonda several impassioned letters. The first was penned shortly after he had his first vision of Freeda, just before Hurricane Andrew struck: In a dreamlike state, he saw a goddess standing on a book of law on a mountaintop; she resembled Freija, the Norse goddess of smiling Nature. He awoke the next day, made a rough sketch of his peace icon, and dubbed it Freeda. "Will you do this for me?" he entreated Fonda. "For Humanity? Please Jane, this could make you immortal."
Such passionate idealism has long animated Gilbert, a veteran member of the small but dedicated World Federalist Association, which favors binding international law to prevent war. In 1981 he organized the Caravan of Human Survival, a demonstration that embarked from a few cities, including Miami, and wended its way via numerous college campuses to the UN, where caravaners presented 23,000 signatures calling for a nuclear freeze. It was that experience, Gilbert says, that taught him the importance of "doing things that are media-worthy."
If Jane Fonda doesn't come through for him, however, Gilbert envisions the worst. To symbolize his fears, he created a photo montage showing Freeda on Mount Trashmore, under the heading, "Freedom's Last Stand." A handwritten plea begs, "Jane -- which way should I go? It's up to you...Freeda.