Skip to main content

On Memorial day, we honor those who have sacrificed their lives while in military service to our country. Among them are heroes, men and women with amazing courage and dedication who went off to war and never returned. I am personally unfamiliar with the kind of courage they have demonstrated, be it unknown or recognized with medals or monuments.

But as important, this day, is to remember and congratulate one woman who also displays ongoing and amazing courage, the courage to wage peace. That woman is Medea Benjamin, the co-founder of Code Pink.

I and my husband were honored with her gracious presence when she hosted a dinner while on the Nation cruise in December of last year. I knew this was a woman to watch and learn from. After our brief but cherished dinner conversation, I confess that we mostly vacationed in the Cayman Islands, while Medea went to work. We watched her do what she does best. Along with other Code Pink activists and fellow cruisers, she stood up and spoke out against the offshore banking the Cayman Islands is known for. It is a preferred haven for 18,000 corporations who wish to stash their cash to avoid taxation. She was there, in the lead, speaking against tax evasion.

Shortly after this action, she stood up and disrupted Wayne La Pierre, executive director of the National Rifle Association, at their post Sandy Hook massacre press conference. It was the NRA's announcement of their solution to gun violence in the schools-- arming teachers. Medea rose from the audience shouting challenges to La Pierre before being dragged off by gorilla-ish security guards.

Then, during President Obama's foreign policy speech to the nation last Thursday, he was correct on one particular point. Medea Benjamin is a woman who should be listened to. After three interruptions by Medea, Obama was somewhat rattled, however recognized her angst, "cutting her some slack" in his own words. It is amazing she had the opportunity to attempt her challenge from the back of the room thrice before being ushered out by the Secret Service.   As she stated later, he was not correct when he said she had not listened. It was precisely because she had listened that she spoke out. Her questions remain unanswered despite the fact Obama would say they have been addressed;  Issues such as closing the prison at Guantanamo Bay, stopping the drone warfare and other policies that make us more unsafe, more prone to war.

This is only a small snapshot of the work of this woman and Code Pink, co-founder Jodie Evans and a growing base of activists. We must pay heed to the big picture and to her words; demanding answers and action along with her. Thank you Medea for your courage. While there are those that will speak against her for any number of reasons, from a  impolite violation of protocol to those who will use outrageous invective, she speaks for all of us. She speaks in favor of ending the need for days to remember the dead and dying in war.  She wages peace.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site