Code Pink Journals CodePINK Journals

Work 4 Peace,Hold All Life Sacred,Eliminate Violence! I am on my mobile version of the door-to-door, going town-to-town holding readings/gatherings/discussions of my book "But What Can I Do?" This is my often neglected blog mostly about my travels since 9/11 as I engage in dialogue and actions. It is steaming with my opinions, insights, analyses toward that end of holding all life sacred, dismantling the empire and eliminating violence while creating the society we want ALL to thrive in

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Taken aside, cornered, asked to leave

I am working at the food tent, feeding the last of the night's people, when Margaret (one of the co-organizers) approaches, motions & requests I join her away from the tent and behind a wall.

When we get there we are joined by two others, a young white male and an older white woman. Both of the latter were in a security meeting with me earlier today, where they vehemently objected to seeing their 'privileges' and the homeless people amongst us as 'lacking privileges' - a suggestion I was making in order to deal with our insistence on seeing homeless people as thieves and the rest of us as having property that needs protecting from them.

The three of them solemnly reveal their intentions: they are the ones appointed the painful (dirty) task of asking me to leave the plaza. Margaret tells me many people have complained about me and that we have lost several talented and valuable young (male) people because of me.

I am supposed to be responsible for those who choose to leave? I ask about who are these people who want me to leave. Their identities are protected, anonymous I am told. I want to face them, have them face me. Impossible I am told. Too many of them I am told. Many have left I am told.

Margaret tells me she has worked too hard, put in long hours for the past 6 months, and spent lots & lots, too much of her money to allow this protest fail - or to allow me to destroy it. I don't know whether I am flattered that she thinks I am so powerful I am capable of single-handedly destroying all she thinks she has built or just sad that she thinks that I would put my energy into destroying anything other then the military & prison industrial complexes.

Margaret tells me, in addition, they are willing to give me money to help me leave. I think they have no idea how much it cost me to come across this country, between biodiesel, which is at least a dollar more a gallon then regular diesel, and getting wvo. hmmmmm

I ask if this decision was made as consensus, the process that we are supposedly using to make decisions.

I am told that in order to spare me the embarrassment of facing everyone, they are doing me a favor by quietly requesting I leave.

Margaret tells me Medea is in support of me leaving. Medea has already told me to leave. She is paranoid that it will be too easy to blame CodePINK or myself if this occupation fails. Medea doesn't want CodePINK, herself, or me around to be the fall guy.

I have already told Medea she (and CodePINK) will be blamed for whatever we do, whether we are here (and that's why it's failed) or not here (& that's why it failed) - so we might as well do whatever the hell we want to do.

Margaret and her allies underestimate me. Although I do not want to be the scapegoat for the consensus process, I will. No one who knows me even a little would think I would be railroaded in this manner off the island - not just for myself, but especially for those who come after me.

I demand consensus, we follow the process. First I beg them to reconsider, to think about what they will be loosing if they insist on trying to railroad me off the island.  First, do they really want to establish this kind of covert action? Are they not committed to the consensus process or is that just a convenience when they want to have others think they embrace democracy?

Second, personally I tell them I am a warrior. I provide diversity on this island. I fight for those who have no voice. I bring the walk to the talk. I am a radical, jewish, womonist/feminist lesbian from a racially-mixed family.


  • At 26/10/11 2:49 PM, Blogger Tina Minkowitz said…

    forgive me for asking, because i don't know you. but was this about your position that homeless people should be seen as lacking privilege? and what was implied from that, to not complain if stuff was taken? or about you being seen personally as too much, too strong etc.? (in your opinion.) i'm interested to know more what you were thinking about privilege. someone i know has recently told me about a situation where a center for peer support has been in tension with homeless people coming in to use the space in different ways, and it seemed to me that there was a negotiation about two different needs for the space, that not automatically one was right or wrong. i can see that this is a different situation but would appreciate if you could fill out your analysis some more and how you see the vision of what the occupations should be. i appreciate a lot of what you have written on this page and your commitment to women and to speaking truth and confronting all kinds of privilege.


Post a Comment

<< Home