Posted by CODEPINK Staff
On October 3rd, a group of CodePink activists went to San Antonio to protest the arrival of Sarah Palin who was there to attend a high-end Republican fundraiser. When we arrived, there was already a large group of Palin fans standing in front of the hotel, holding signs and chanting her name. Our group, being significantly smaller, chose to stand on the median, just across from the pro-Palin group.
Although much smaller in number, we were drawing a great deal of attention from passers-by and news media. In bright pink and with signs in hand, several of us flashed peace signs at the traffic and at the group standing on the other side of the street. Two of us, dressed as McCain and Bush - bride and groom, kissed as the crowd fell silent. In tow was a little baby carriage with a baby Palin doll and a sign that read “Bush-McCain Love Child”.
After a few minutes of peaceful protest, an elderly man crossed over to the median. Wearing a red white and blue shirt in the design of a Texas flag and carrying a small U.S. flag, he stepped in front of me, trying to cover up my message. He turned and looked at me in my McCain bridal outfit. Trying to keep things cordial, I said “Hi, how are you?” He responded “I’m better than you.” After the Palin fans left and the protest dwindled, that simple statement kept floating back into my head.
“I’m better than you.” I started thinking about the true impact of that single statement. If I’m better than you, then my race is better than yours, my country is better than yours, my religion is better than yours. If I’m better than you, then I deserve to live and maybe you don’t. If I’m better than you, I can use up all of the resources and save nothing for future generations. If I’m better than you, then global warming isn’t a problem - I’ll be dead before its impact is felt. If I’m better than you, then it’s okay for my country to invade yours. If I’m better than you, then I deserve all of the wealth and you deserve to remain in poverty. If I’m better than you, then my child deserves to be educated, housed and fed, but yours does not. If I’m better than you, then peace isn’t necessary as long as I remain unscathed.
So our mission is clear -- to remind each other that no one person is better than another.