Posted by CODEPINK Staff
It has been an amazing week. You wouldn't know it from the media, but CODEPINK was everywhere! By the end of the week, you couldn't walk down the 16th Street pedestrian mall without seeing people wearing "I am peace delegate pins", carrying our Peace Fans, or--most popular of all--prominently displaying our Make Out Not War stickers on their bodies, bags, hats--you name it! People would stop us to say, "Please, please, do you have any more stickers. I MUST have one." At one point, a policeman came over to Deidra, one of our local coordinators, and asked her for Make Out, Not War stickers for himself and his entire squad!
One of my most favorite moments was on Thursday, as we parading about town, building, taking down and rebuilding our "CODEPINK Peace Platform." People would gather around as we put it together, and would repeat after us--with great approval--our planks such as ALL TROOPS OUT OF THE IRAQ NOW! TALKS WITH IRAN! UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE, GLOBAL DISARMAMENT, GREEN ENERGY, FAIR TRADE NOT FREE TRADE, RESPECT HUMAN RIGHTS/CLOSE GITMO, etc. We had a fantastic prop that Tighe and his "construction crew" made in record time, and it was great to be on the streets with a message of what we are FOR.
We had great interactions with the delegates all week long. While overzealous hotel security was so afraid of CODEPINK that they would try to kick us out of the lobbies, we still managed to get in and talk to the delegates about the need for the Dems to do more to end the Iraq war, stop a new one, and de-escalate the conflict in Afghanistan. I was surprised at how receptive the delegates were!
We used our few passes inside the Convention Center to the max, lobbying every congressperson and high level Dem we could find. Only once did the security come and kick one of the Pinkers out.
We went to several corporate-sponsored reception with our "corporate money out of politics" message and confronted Nancy Pelosi in several high-profile events about her lack of leadership to end the war and impeach Bush.
I loved the high energy of the march after the Rage Against the Machine concert, where Iraq Veterans Against the War led thousands of angry protesters for miles through the streets of Denver.
While the incident in which CODEPINKer Alicia Forrest was terribly manhandled by police and arrested for doing absolutely nothing, I was pleasantly surprised at how nice the police acted toward CODEPINK. They threatened us with arrest many times, but in the end always backed down and allowed us to exercise of free speech rights. Let's hope they are as reasonable at the Republican Convention!
The mainstream media might have ignored the myriad of anti-war actions that took place throughout the week, but the delegates certainly heard the peace message--and our frustration at both parties--loud and clear.