Oakland Tribune Outtakes

Notes from Oakland, Berkeley and in between

CodePINK doesn’t see it like Austin Powers “Who throws a shoe? Honestly!”

By kbender
Wednesday, December 17th, 2008 at 5:04 pm in Uncategorized.

No matter what you think of the Bush Administration, it’s not a journalist’s job to hurl two size 10 loafers at the U.S. president. In my humble opinion, it’s actually not OK to throw shoes at anyone — ever– but I guess not everyones’ mama taught them their manners.

CodePINK, the colorful and always theatrical anti-war group that has spent the last year protesting in front of the U.S. Marine recruiting center in Berkeley, took to the streets Wednesday calling for the release of Iraqi journalist Muntadhar al-Zeidi, who hurled two shoes at the 62-year-old president during a news conference in Baghdad on Sunday.

Members of the group and others marched around the recruiting station and hung tennis shoes, flip flops, work shoes and boots on lines air to show support for al-Zeidi.

Melanie Morgan from Move American Forward, the largest pro-troops organization in the country thought the whole idea was inane.  

“It’s not a journalist’s job to insult or make any kind of editorial judgement,” said Morgan. “Journalism is observing and reporting the facts.”  

In fact, shoe throwing really is so asinine that actor Mike Myers’ play8ing international man of mystery Austin Powers asks “Who throws a shoe? Honestly?” when a bellman hurls a black dress shoe at his head during a scene in the movie. “It really hurts. I”m going to have a lump there you idiot.”  Check out Powers and Bush in a hybrid video brought to you by our friends at YouTube.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AOWR-9HYQjo

In many Arab countries, showing the sole of one’s shoes, much less throwing shoes at another person, is considered extremely disrespectful. It’s like spitting in someones face _ or worse _ here in America.

But that’s not the way CodePINK co-found Medea Benjamin sees it.

“It’s outrageous that al-Zaidi could get two years in prison for insulting George Bush, when Bush is directly responsible for the deaths of 1.5 million Iraqis and 4,200 U.S. troops, and 5 million displaced Iraqis,” she said.

CodePINK’s Zanne Joi took a different route, blaming the media for “accepting the propaganda to go to war and perpetuating that propaganda.”

“I’m not saying journalists should throw shoes at Bush but journalists could have asked the hard questions and not been a mouthpiece for these war criminals,” she said. 

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One Response to “CodePINK doesn’t see it like Austin Powers “Who throws a shoe? Honestly!””

  1. fred dodsworth Says:

    Code Pink are a pack a delusional and misguided female folk who would be far more on target and more effective picketing U.C. Berkeley’s Law School, home of the notorious John Yoo, than picketing the downtown Berkeley recruiting station of the US Marine Corp. While I support their right to picket anywhere they want, I consider it a complete waste of time, money and energy to continue to flog that dead horse.

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