Pretty In Pink

Code Pink

Code Pink is a liberal women's organization that focuses its efforts on politically driven social issues. Founded in 2002 by three women, it's original mission was to stop the war in Iraq. Medea Benjamin, Jodie Evans, and Gael Murphy were responsible for starting this infamous color coded peace driven movement. Although it is a pro-women's organization, it does not take a feminist stance, inviting all people regardless of gender or race to join their cause. The term Code Pink is derived from the colored terror alert advisory, attempting to poke sarcastic fun at the fear based alert system. Evans is quoted as saying in an article for Fox Business about the power of the chosen color "There is something about pink -- it's disarming, it makes you smile. We want to be disarming when delivering the message, when pointing at the elephant in the room." This is exactly what Code Pink has become experts at, is pointing out the obvious problems of our world and calling for them to be fixed by our government.

Code Pink began on November 17, 2002 in Washington D.C. as an extended protest for the Iraqi War during the Bush Administration. The three founders, along with over hundred other women, camped out in front of the White House for four months to help perpetuate peace. Over the course of those several months, many organizations, such as Greenpeace, and thousands of people, including several celebrities, joined in the peaceful protest against Bush's War. The protest ended on March 8, which marked International Women's Day. CNN Correspondent Maria Hinojosa was live at the event interviewing several of the attendees, including actress/activist Janeane Garofalo when she said "I guess I want to be in any kind of a rally that supports finding a diplomatic solution to this situation in Iraq. I don't think that the administration is being particularly honest with the American people about what this is going to cost in life and dollars, what the dangers are of retaliatory strikes once it happens. This is not a war that needs to happen immediately." Since then, Code Pink has evolved into a myriad display of selfless activism. As so eloquently quoted on their official website, "CODEPINK has become a worldwide network of women and men committed to working for peace and social justice".

Recently, with the troop withdrawals set forth by the Obama administration, this is the closest the American Public has come to seeing any sort of closure within the war. With their original mission, somewhat accomplished, Code Pink has averted their efforts elsewhere, such as the recent Wall Street bailouts. From Kathryn Glass of Fox Business, "In late 2008, as the federal government aimed a massive bailout package at Wall Street, the founding women of Code Pink worried that a bailout of the banking system could undermine the funding of social programs as much as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan." Code Pink was also responsible for delivering humanitarian aid to those in Fallujah and New Orleans. In May, the Oakland Tribune reported Code Pink headed to Gaza with $15,000 for playground and medicine for children. Their website mentions over ten different campaigns they are currently working on, such as creating online anti-war petitions through John Nichols of The Capital Times in an opinion based article, is quoted as saying "Those of us who watched Code Pink evolve into the Most Valuable Progressive Organization of the Bush years would expect no less of this amazing group in the Obama years."

Not all press that this group receives is as positive as Nichols feels. Considering this is a very liberal organization, it is no surprise that conservative media would not be a fan, especially Fox News. The Fox News website has an abundance of articles, criticizing the organization including one article titled "Code Pink Has No Shame". John Gibson calls this organization rabid and lacking any sort of class. Another article written by Jana Winter focuses on how the organization is now resorting to witchcraft. In all actuality, Code Pink spent several months protesting a controversial Marine Corps Recruiting Center in Berkeley, California. To make the days protesting more interesting, Code Pink had 'themed days', one including dressing up in witches costumes. Somehow dressing up in Halloween costumes has equated to them practicing witchcraft in the eyes of conservative media reporting, hence the Fox News Article titled  "Code Pink Protesters Try Witchcraft at Anti-Marine Rallies". It is just natural in our society when their are two opposing organizations, that one is eventually going to slander the other.

Code Pink takes an unbiased stance, their 'In Action' website states "We do not support or oppose any federal candidates. We aim to educate the public about the costs of war to the United States, the world, the earth and all lives affected by it in order to redirect the energy, money and time spent on war toward activities which directly further our common good, such as education, healthcare, job training, alternative energy development, and deficit reduction." With multiple chapters in almost every state, its hard to say exactly how many members are involved in the socially just causes since there is no actual membership form or agreement. It is stated pretty clearly on the website, that the only requirements for membership is that you are passionate about the same issues Code Pink stands for. In addition to having countless members, Code Pink is also a non-profit organization that receives all of its funding from private donations. It is truly amazing just how much this organization is able to accomplish based on just private donations.

Code Pink is an organization that actually stands for something. It is an organization that is focused on not only the future of America, but also the future of the world and the peace that is so desperately needed. Code Pink's call to supporters is well presented on their website, "We call on women around the world to rise up and oppose the war in Iraq. We call on mothers, grandmothers, sisters and daughters, on workers, students, teachers, healers, artists, writers, singers, poets, and every ordinary outraged woman willing to be outrageous for peace.  Women have been the guardians of life-not because we are better or purer or more innately nurturing than men, but because the men have busied themselves making war. Because of our responsibility to the next generation, because of our own love for our families and communities and this country that we are a part of, we understand the love of a mother in Iraq for her children, and the driving desire of that child for life." It is this understanding that has pushed the momentum of this activist group so far, and will continue to fight for causes that will only benefit future generations across the world.