Code Pink Journals CodePINK Journals

Work 4 Peace,Hold All Life Sacred,Eliminate Violence! For now, I’ve returned from my Joiyssey to participate in the "revolution":I’ve been at many Occupy sites across the country:1st in D.C. Freedom Plaza I faced & challenged racism/white supremacy, sexism/patriarchy, classism, heterosexism & eventually was kicked off the island; then I offered workshops as I drove to CA:“Anti-Racism Geared for White Occupiers”; “NO DRONES” "Successes and Pitfalls of OWS"

Monday, September 28, 2015


The police are so fuckin over the top - how many times are they called out to help someone who is threatening suicide and the fuckin cops end up shooting that person?

How are we continuing to tolerate the presence of police amongst us?

Saturday, September 19, 2015

TJ's and choice....of poison...

I was picking up a few things at Trader Joe's today in New Jersey and got into a conversation with a worker when I asked for the individual organic avocados.

For a brief moment this past month or so, TJ's had individual organic avocados for sale at the same price as the non-organic ones, 99 cents each. Normally they sell 4 in a little plastic mesh bag for $5 or $6 depending on what part of the country you're in.

This employee told me that TJ's only gets these 99 cent individual avocados once a year, much to my disappointment.

We then got into a discussion about organic food. I suggested my plan, which I attempt to tell to as many folks as possible - and please help spread it.

Trader Joe's needs to tell all its vendors that in 5 years they are going to go 100% organic - that way, all their vendors will have the five years it takes to grow in harmony with life in order to be certified organic.

He informed me that TJ's would never do that - and why? Not the usual 'blank check' excuses because it's too difficult for the farmer or because they just don't want to, no.

He said the TJ's wants to give the customer a CHOICE! Rage surged thru me as I said, "what, a choice to poison themselves? Forget themselves, a choice to poison the Mother Earth? Poison the farm worker???"

I asked him if he knew about the health of farm workers. He shook his head "no", so I informed him how farm workers - and their entire families including unborn children - are being poisoned by pesticides, herbicides, all the 'cides'.

I asked him if he knew about the condition of the Mother Earth, that we use 6 BILLION tons of pesticides to grow mono- and huge agri-crops every year. The bees only have 30 years left of life on earth if we don't IMMEDIATELY stop using pesticides.

He shook his head "no, no, no, no".

It is beyond me how anyone can be young, alive, in this country, and working with food even, and not know about what we are doing to our food supply.

I let him see how disgusted I am so I doubt he'll ever use that idiotic excuse again in life.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Transgender backlash to radical feminism or Transgenderism 101

There is a HUGE machine out there that infiltrates every aspect of our lives and beings: it is the machine of patriarchy, white supremacy, and capitalism that employs racism, misogyny, sexism to oppress and control us. 

The transgender response is an indication of how successful that machine has been at oppressing that individual. This machine, designed to make us fit into boxes that define, characterize & limit according to race and/or sex, places value on us depending on how neatly we fit in those boxes.

And this machine punishes (at best) those that don't or refuse to fit in those boxes. 

Self-hatred, self-loathing is a condition intrinsic to both fitting or not fitting in. Trans people see they don't want to be in their society-designed box but instead of smashing that box, pounding their chests and saying "THIS is who I am and I love myself the way I am", they search for another society-designed box to fit in.

Then, in our consumer-driven society that believes we can buy anything, they proceed to buy surgery to mutilate their bodies while taking highly toxic and synthetic hormones to poison their bodies

Militarization of our police...continued

I passed on the info a couple weeks ago about North Dakota legislature approving use of military surveillance drones by police against the people of North Dakota.

I just learned last nite that the city council in San Jose 'approved' such a drone for the S.J. police department - a year after the police had secretly purchased the drone for their arsenal.

The use of drones has increased a gadzillion times since 2003, when we attacked Afghanistan with about 150 drones in our arsenal. By 2009, we had over 4000 controlled mostly from Creech AFB. Today, there are at least 150 bases in the u.s. (that we know about) that are training 'pilots' and operating drones against people around the world.

North Dakota is the first to pass a state-wide initiative to employ drones; several cities around the nation have signed pledges to forbid drones in their airspace. The FAA has still to develop regulations monitoring and controlling the use of drones in u.s. land mass airspace.

Our military weapons - weapons developed to hunt down and kill other people - are coming home to be used against us. UNLESS we stand up and FIGHT!

Message me if you want to be on the list serve for the folks fighting drones, in the u.s. and internationally. Or email nodronesinfo at gmail.


Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Bee more

While searching for veggie oil in the Midwest, I met a tall, trim old white guy who has been collecting, cleaning, and running used veggie oil for almost 30 years – he told me he’s turning 80 years old this fall. He was bowlegged and slightly bent, a beige cowboy hat jammed over a shock of white and grey hair, a tucked in long sleeved checkered shirt and worn bluejeans held up beneath a little pot belly by a leather belt sporting a huge vintage steer horns silver buckle.

He looked like he’d be at home in the wild wild west several decades past – and not particularly welcoming to “my kind”. But he was, welcoming that is and he even thought he & I were seeing eye-to-eye.

Hmmmm – it was his poor 80 year old eye sight (he didn’t want to put on his glasses) that made him read one of my bumper stickers as “against abortion”. We had a good laugh, at least I did, when I read the rest of it to him: “get a vasectomy”. But he was quick to assure me he believes in everyone’s right to be different!

We then moved to talking about the environment and he told me a sad story about his bees. He said he was a registered bee keeper in the state of Illinois – which meant farmers had to inform him if and when they were going to spray their fields with pesticides.

He said one morning he heard the low rumble of pesticide planes and dashed out his home, jumped on his motorcycle and found where the planes were taking off from. Sure enough, they were spraying a farm down the road from his.

When he approached the foreman, showed him his registered bee keeper paper, informed him of his obligation to notify bee keepers BEFORE they sprayed, and asked him to stop, my bee keeper elder said the foreman just laughed at him.

And all his bees died.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Surely you must have adopted....

I share a picture of my grandchild with a white woman who has shared her grands' pics with me, and she immediately tells me about her friend who adopted two children from Haiti. I confirm the "white" is understood in her description of her "friend".

I interrupt the conversation to inform her neither my daughter nor my grandchild were adopted - as if...

I tell her how, when my daughter was young and we were walking down the street together, white people would marvel at her hair and "tan", reaching out in a quickly thwarted (by me first, then my daughter) attempt to fondle her hair while asking "where did she get this hair from?" And "ohhhhhh, what a nice 'tan'!"

But if we were walking down this same street with a Black womon, white people would not question but just smile with questioning concerned eyes, as they assumed my daughter was her daughter. They would not be so forward as to ask her how her daughter got that hair but they would look so confused and even worried as they'd make other comments about how beautiful her daughter is and those eyes....grrrrrr

White people could see the Black in my daughter only when she was with another Black person; and then they could not see my daughter's biological relationship to me if we were with a Black womon.

And this white woman, seeing the color in my progeny, went for the adoption "explanation".... sigh

Thursday, August 20, 2015

The comfort privilege whites have ... when telling Black people how to fight whites...

Tonite we were at a progressive church in a very small town, although it appears to be the largest town we've been in since leaving Madison. I have found a place to park my truck in front of the church and on the busiest main street in town, so she's getting lots of small town visibility! Yeah!!!

Our dinner has been provided for us by the local activists, and about 10 or have joined us, swelling the number of white people to about 25 now, with still just two brown people and no Black people.

At the end of the presentation, a white womon approached me, very anxious to ask me a question about Black Womyn’s Lives Matter. She wanted to know why those Black womyn are not interrupting other presidential candidates besides Bernie Sanders.

I got the distinct impression she didn't listen to any of my presentation but just was so thrilled I was here bringing up the subject of BWLM, and she was bursting to tell me exactly what 'they' should be doing.

She proceeded to declare that she thinks that Black womyn and men should be going to presidential candidate gatherings of republicans and democrats to challenge them instead of harassing Bernie, our very best (i.e. white and male) candidate for president.

I marveled once again, at the ease with which white people think they can tell Black people what to do and how to do it, when Black people are attempting to eliminate or at least hold whites accountable for our racism.

I point blank told this womon that I do not think it is the place of white people to tell Black people how to fight us and our racism. She was surprised but did not get defensive, instead she said she hadn’t thought about it in that way, then she actually agreed and promised to think more carefully.

I asked her if she had approached Sanders or any other presidential candidates raising the issues that these womyn had raised with him? Of course she, a little sheepishly, shook her head ‘no’. And why hadn’t she? She understood that she was content with Sanders’ platform of restoring the middle class, and hadn’t even considered Black people might want something else, but had also waited for a Black person, once again, to challenge our racism.

I also pointed out how poorly – well actually how male and whitely – Sanders responded and how white people can learn by his example how not to react in a racist way. I asked her if she had any ideas of how he could have responded in an anti-racist way.

We agreed that his platform could and should have included addressing the issues of police brutality, poverty, racism that these Black Lives Matter womyn were bringing up. He could and should have deeply thanked them, acknowledged what they were saying and his privilege (i.e. racism), and made a public commitment right then and there to prioritize abolishing racism, while making this an integral and central part of his platform.

I asked her if she saw her willingness to tell Black womyn what to do as part of white privilege? She nodded and thanked me again for showing her how to be a better anti-racist.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Organic shame...

It is still bright and warm, huge fluffy white clouds floating lazily across deep cerulean blue early evening skies, by the time we arrive at the church and folks start unloading the two support vehicles, bringing in their stuff for the night.

A couple of womyn are coming up from Madison with food for tonite. I'll have to figure out if I'm going to ask them if any of their food is organic - and then wonder if they really know what organic means and is. From the sodas and bottled water, crap snack food - all corporate junk - that is spread out for us, I have severe doubts.

But that is why I have my camper, so I can cook for myself.

Before I can head out the door to start cooking, I am urged quite loudly to partake of their feast. The womyn have arrived with an array of sliced lunch meat and cheese, breads and condiments, as well as a rice & veggie salad. I feel uncomfortable but I am driven to ask if anything is organic.

One of the younger womyn walkers, horrified I'm sure, rolls her eyes and tells me that it is so expense to buy organic. I agree it's expensive but add, if you're only counting cost as dollars and cents maybe, but it is very expensive for our bodies, the Mother Earth, and the farm worker to do non-organic.

Then I confess happily that I am an organic snob.

I hear this same young womon unabashedly ask our hosts if anything is gluten-free, like the bread. Talk about fuckin expensive! I see the hosts have made little signs on the food that include "vegan" and "gluten-free" but no "organic" signs.

I think about how quickly those two things became a designer health bandwagon, and how comfortably everyone has adapted to accommodate those diets, both those that do not eat vegan or gluten-free and those that do. And I marvel once more at the power of advertising and trend-setting: if only organic was set as such a trend!

Later I think about why I said that I'm an organic snob. I'm just putting myself down plus the entire organic movement. And it reinforces the false idea that healthy organic food is for rich snobbish people. I could have said that I don't eat poison - but that's not true, I have my non-organic exceptions usually in the form of sugar or dim sum - but my exceptions certainly do not come in corporate processed packages in this small church.

I decide I will tell everyone at some point tomorrow that I didn't mean to diminish "organic" food but that I should have said I have a commitment to the Mother Earth, to the farm workers, and to my body to eat organic. With pride, not shame.

Conflict already....

First day, joining the walk late - mostly all white people, one brown man who is wearing a name tag for those of us white u.s.ofa. folks who have difficulties with any language but english.

We walk along a 2 lane road, which I'm sure passes for a major highway here in the Wisconsin country side. I'm trying not to get depressed walking alongside tons of gmo corn and soy. Finally we approach the road that leads us thru the center of 'town' to the church where my truck is parked and where we will spend the nite.

The town is one block, lengthened by the large, old courthouse building and on the opposite side of the street, the 'modern' police building.

As we enter the town, I try to get folks to walk down the main street. There has been no vehicle traffic & I'm sure the townsfolks will be amazed if not thrilled or furious, to see a protest on their street.

I give up as the walkers surge across the street - at the cross walk - and continue to walk on the sidewalk.

I am holding out our Black Womyn's Lives Matter banner as we walk. An angry white man in a large burgundy pick-up truck revs his engine as he passes us, shouting something, the exact words we're not sure but we know he's not happy.

Very shortly later, he returns and this time I can hear him say "White men's lives matter"... o.k.

As we get about halfway down the block, two big armed white men slip out of an inset door and insert themselves into our walk.

I ask them how many police does this town have, as I have seen a green sign just before we entered town saying there are 350 folks living here.

I was told there are 8 police and 4 are former military. We are asked what it is that we are doing. Someone declares we are on an anti-drone walk from Madison to the Volk base. Several others continue to talk about drones and our opposition to them.

I have to speak up loudly to say actually we're making the connection between police violence against Black people and the military violence, using drones against brown people.

I tell the police that what we really want from them is for them to lay down their weapons, take off that uniform & that bullet proof vest, and join us.

I feel several folks gasp and one of the youngest, white barefoot fellas reaches out his hand to shake the police officer's hand and make nice.

I move away and continue bannering.

The police leave and I feel like I need to ask if the group has agreements around dealing with the police. One of the older white men, balding on the top with long straggly hair down his back and a matching straggly beard down his front blurts out his support for the police.

He continues to rant about how the police came to his house when his crazy daughter was threatening to kill him and his wife - who also loves the police - and the police intervened, saving them from their child, and taking her away.

I try to express my sorrow at his family dynamics at the same time standing firm against police handling such a situation - does he know that many times police murder family members when called, especially if the people are Black? I assume his wife and daughter are white, but even white folks have been murdered by police responding to mental health issues.

I tell him it is a huge failure of our society in general and for him & his family in particular, that the police were the only people he could call during this crisis. I asked him, what if our society put money into providing mental health services for your family, what if there was someone else you could have called to come help them?

Our break is over, but before he slips off the bench, one of the other marchers kinda jokingly comments "so you're a trouble maker, eh?" to which I respond I sure as hell hope so. And I hope I'm amongst trouble-makers - why else are we here?

Connecting police violence against Black people with military violence against Brown people.

I have finally arrived in Madison at the airport on this first day of the 90 mile walk to connect police violence with military violence.

Madison and Wisconsin, like every other part of this country, are really important places to have this walk and make this connection. Although Madison has only a small percentage of Black people, less than 8%, the jails are filled with at least 50% of Black people. Black people are 10 times as likely to get policed, picked up and arrested than white people.

Then Volk military base has joined the rapidly growing ranks of bases in the u.s.ofa. that operate drones, including training drone pilots. In 2009, there were 2 such bases (that we knew about) in the u.s. Today there are 150 (that we know about).

So this walk is making the connection between the violence against Black people perpetrated here on this land by police with the violence against brown & Muslim people perpetrated by our military on lands thousands of miles away from our country.

I have missed over half of today's march because even though I flew all nite to get here in time, my suitcase didn't make it with my early morning flight so I had to wait until the next flight arrived at noon in order to pick it up and bring it with me.

Prior to coming, I had considered the challenges of shifting with my right arm and healing dislocated shoulder but I totally forgot how much physical upper body strength my truck demands when hauling myself into the driver's seat and/or into the camper part....grrrrr.

But I was able to drive, shifting at times with my left hand, especially in the lower more difficult gears, but changing up to my right hand in the higher gears.

The womon who is bottom-lining support for the walkers picked me up in the church parking lot where we are going to be spending the evening and where I parked my truck and then took me to meet the walkers and join for the last couple of miles.