Hippie Yells At Rumsfeld, We Are Conflicted
It's easy to use "Code Pink" as a shorthand for "crazies who make liberals look bad," because they are shouty ladies in pink who scream at people. But it's nice to see someone bug Rummy.
Here is a lady following our worst Defense Secretary ever right into the White House Correspondents' Dinner reception, at the Hinkley Hilton. She calls him a war criminal, and shouts at him, and so on. As a blogger who happens to agree that Don Rumsfeld is a war criminal, we are all, "oh, lady, stop it, we are so embarrassed."
But, you know, the first time we went to this event, the Correspondents Dinner, we saw Henry Kissinger hanging out five feet away from George Clooney (they weren't together), in the Newsweek reception or something, wearing a little tux, fat and rich and at the satisfying end of a full and comfortable life.
And no one was shouting at him, and he was having just a wonderful little time, and everyone—liberal, conservative, politician, journalist—was polite or obsequious to him, and we just didn't really know what to think or do, in that situation, confronted with a man who'd killed 600,000 Cambodians and then set up the Pinochet coup for good measure. It's not our responsibility to arrest him, or even yell at him, but it's nice that someone is at least making these people uncomfortable, when they go out in polite society, where they're are still welcomed with open arms and free hors d'oeuvres. Even if the person making them uncomfortable is just confirming all their stereotypes about unhinged hippies.
Update: According to Variety, Rumsfeld was so flustered that he came to think of himself as a mere beast!
The event drew no where near the GOPers of the Bush years —- one attendee called last year's event "glum" —- but figures like Newt Gingrich mingled at the pre-dinner parties. A beaming Rumsfeld seemed unfazed as he entered to the woman's shouts of "War criminal! Arrest this man!" right in his face. Asked about it by Variety, he threw his hands up in the air and said, "They are out front demonstrating about animals... It is life in America."
Either that or he's so deluded that he doesn't actually hear or process negative criticism.