The willingness of CODEPINK activists to cross borders and to act boldly for justice, often risking arrest, reminds me of the daring we had during the struggle for farm worker rights.
What a year CODEPINK has had. They organized a national book tour for Medea Benjamin's Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control, helping to educate people about America's secret drone wars. They traveled to Pakistan to protest drone attacks that have brought death and fear to vast swaths of the Pakistani hinterland.
From coverage on CNN to feature stories in the New York Times, the CODEPINK delegation's presence in Pakistan brought much-needed media attention to the human costs of this new and unregulated American policy.
And right now CODEPINK has an emergency delegation on the ground inside Gaza delivering much-needed medical supplies in the wake of the Israeli attack.
Inspired by the California grape boycott, CODEPINK's boycott campaign against illegal Israeli settlement cosmetics made by Ahava achieved new victories, particularly when Abigail Disney, granddaughter of Roy Disney, disclaimed her share of the company and pledged her share of the profits to organizations working against Israel's occupation.
Time and again CODEPINK lends a helping hand and sheds a spotlight on inequality and injustice. Last month, they teamed up with New York's Lower East Side Girls Club to support families hardest hit by Hurricane Sandy.
As a life-long feminist, and board member of Feminist Majority since it was founded, I can't tell you how happy I was to see CODEPINK inside the Republican Convention standing up for reproductive healthcare and the rights of women to control their bodies.
This year CODEPINK celebrated a decade of creative resistance to war. Can you believe it's been almost ten years since the US invasion of Iraq? While I wish groups like CODEPINK were out of business by now, the truth is there's still a lot of work to do.
The US is now escalating secret wars with robotic drones. Meanwhile the government claims there isn't enough money to fund our schools and hospitals, and after eleven years of occupation, most girls in Afghanistan still don't have access to education. The same is true in the other places where the US is launching drone attacks, such as the tribal areas of Pakistan, and in Yemen and Somalia.
The Taliban's shooting of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai because she supported education for girls was a wake-up cry to the world. For the cost of one Predator drone, we could send 37,000 children to school in Pakistan for a year. What a great way to fight extremism, build a better future for the youth, and make ourselves safer by winning the hearts and minds of the people. It's time to fund schools not drones!
Please join me this holiday season in making a gift to CODEPINK to support their work to redirect resources away from the bloated Pentagon budget and towards schools at home and abroad, and other life-affirming community needs.
I was humbled, thrilled and surprised when President Obama gave me the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and on that day I renewed my commitment to stand up for the freedom of people everywhere and their rights to dignity and justice. Supporting CODEPINK is one of the best ways to do just that!
¡Que Viva CODEPINK!
PS: Have you seen CODEPINK's hot pink new video celebrating 10 years of creative resistance? Watch it at codepink.org/10years