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, December 26, 2005

Raging Grannies and Wal-mart

The heavens parted & allowed a weak sun to shine for about an hour as the Raging Grannies and CodePINK women gathered in the parking lot at Wal-mart in Oakland. We sang the grannies famous X-mess songs where they’ve taken popular tunes, as Jingle Bells and Oh When the Saints, and re-written the lyrics. The grannies held a Raging Grannies purple banner and we held our signs that read: “Christmas was just another day in Iraq: 19 Iraqis dead, 2 U.S. soldiers dead”; and “Violent Toys = Violent Boys” ; and “Say NO to war toys”; and “War is NOT a game”. We also handed out flyers about “War is not fun and games” and our weekly vigils.

We were not once hassled by security or police – they hovered around and waited us out!

We did get cheered & thanked by many shoppers, folks driving by, and workers alike. One young woman pulled over in her car & asked with astonishment “Buying at Wal-mart is supporting the war?” I spoke with her briefly about the 6 richest individuals among the top 10 richest in our country & their support of the Bush administration. She asked where I recommend shopping – a granny said ‘don’t shop – give up shopping’. I said chose a small store, owned by people you can identify, when you really need something. She agreed to never shop at Wal-mart again!

Another passerby, this time a young white man with a military hair cut, cheered us on as he passed saying: ‘yes, support our troops, bring ‘em home NOW – and I’m military. I’m with you all the way!’ Then he reiterated: “I’m military, I say bring our troops home NOW”.

None of the shoppers were hostile or flipped us off. One very wealthy-looking older white straight couple dressed to the nines hurried by. I attempted to give the woman a flyer & she shook her head no and then shot me a disgusted look over her shoulder when I said “please don’t buy at Wal-mart, especially war toys”.

We speculated why the police did not arrive to ask us to move – maybe they were called but didn’t make it a priority; or maybe with this last huge law suit Wal-mart lost, they’re being more careful. Or maybe because the parking lot includes customer parking for many other stores – a pretty unique situation for Wal-mart I believe – they stayed back. Security did wish us a happy new year as we left though! When I mentioned 2006 is the year we say enough, basta, and end war, the two guards just smiled broadly!