Why I Was Smiling
By Cindy Sheehan
30 October, 2005
had a huge grin on my face when I was getting arrested. I have received
a lot of flak for smiling. Apparently I am not supposed to smile, but
I had some really good reasons for doing so.
First of all, I
was having fun. I was with a group of good-humored, cheerful, happy
people. We were singing old protest songs and old Sunday school songs
and clapping. I felt I had to be cheerful to set the tone. We didn't
want any trouble or to do anything non-peaceful. Secondly, when I got
arrested and the officers lifted me out I was afraid that America would
see my underwear and that tickled me.
There is another
and more important reason that I was smiling. I had not genuinely smiled
since Casey was killed in Iraq. I thought my hope was buried along with
my son and I was in a pit of hopeless despair. Camp Casey gave me back
my hope because America came out in huge numbers to support us and they
raised their voices with ours in unison to take our country back and
to hold this administration accountable for the lies and mistakes that
are killing tens of thousands of innocent people. There were hundreds
of thousands of regular Americans who came out to protest the war and
Bush's policies this past Saturday. Hundreds of faithful Americans turned
out for our interfaith religious service Sunday night next to the Washington
Monument. The so-called religious right doesn't have a monopoly on God.
I am so pleased that the people of America are becoming active participants
in Democracy and America is ready to put their money where their collective
mouths are: to bring our troops home and hold BushCo accountable. It
is a wonderful thing to be doing something that makes a difference and
it is a wonderful and miraculous thing to have my hope back. That is
why I am smiling.
Now about Hurricane
Rita: I woke up on Saturday morning filled with excitement. I knew that
the rally and march were going to be amazing events and I was thrilled
to be a part of them. I switched on the TV and turned on CNN and for
2 hours, I watched one of their reporters in front of the same downed
tree and it wasn't even raining. I knew that there was a hurricane and
it was damaging. At the point of the news cycle though, I thought CNN
could be covering other news. 40 soldiers have been killed this month
so far in Iraq and countless Iraqis have been killed. The war is still
going on and the news has been dominated by hurricanes and the terrible
aftermaths. I actually think the mainstream media has been doing a good
job of pointing out the dropped balls in the Gulf States. However, CNN
and other mainstream news outlets ALWAYS report other news besides the
illegal occupation of Iraq.
When we had hundreds
of thousands of people turn out for protests all over the nation on
March 19th, the 2nd anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, the Terry Schiavo
fiasco was occurring. The Schiavo tragedy was bad for one family and
I was in agony for them, but I found it hypocritical that Congress would
rush into a special session to save one person's lives when so many
were being needlessly killed in Iraq partly because Congress abrogated
their Constitutional responsibilities to declare war. I was also disappointed
that that tragedy superseded the protest coverage. Wolf Blitzer called
our protests "Insignificant."
Saturday was the
most important event in peace history in decades. The numbers were underreported
and the wonderful energy was unreported by the mainstream media. With
the MSM there will always be something more important than covering
the atrocity of Iraq: Michael Jackson, Scott Peterson, Terry Schiavo,
The Runaway Bride, etc. It is time we hold our media accountable, too.
Balanced coverage of all issues and some investigative reporting would
be extremely refreshing.
I am sorry for what
seemed to be an insensitive remark about the people who were affected
by Rita, but that was not my intention. I am very aware that the failed
policies of the Bush administration have all put us in the same boat,
so to speak, and we need to take responsibility for righting the wrongs
here in our country and in Iraq.
I don't think I
can be challenged for my analysis of the war and for what I say because
it is all the truth and comes from my heart, so I have to be attacked
for smiling. I won't apologize for smiling, though, we are making a
difference and that is definitely something to smile about!
More on anti war
movement at http://www.BringThemHomeNowTour.org http://www.meetwithCindy.com