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KITTLE: Costumed protesters make Tampa weird and wild

By   /   August 27, 2012  /   2 Comments

By M.D. Kittle  | Wisconsin Reporter

Matt Kittle

You know it’s Republican National Convention time when the ladies from Code Pink break out the full-body vagina suits.

As if the city of Tampa didn’t have enough problems.

Not only is Gulf Coast Florida in the teeth of Hurricane Isaac, Tampa police are charged with keeping the peace at a lightning-rod event expected to draw tens of thousands of people, including protesters such as the crew from the vagina diatribe.

What were the politically – and anatomically — correct Code Pink members protesting Sunday outside the historic Tampa Theatre? Apparently the Republican stance on abortion and universal health care. I don’t know. Frankly, it was difficult to get past the suits.

“We are in opposition to the right-wing agenda that wages war on women’s bodies,” organizer and Code Pink co-founder Rae Abileah, 29, told TampaBay.com.


San Francisco Code Pink has been planning this soiree for quite some time, something the feminist group likes to bill as “Take your Vagina to the RNC.” Why, they even have a song, both catchy and creepy.

“Let’s start behaving like a true majority. Show these guys that power isn’t in the way you pee,” croons the duet,  a poor woman’s version of the Indigo Girls.

Code Pink, which describes itself as a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end U.S. funded wars and occupations and redirect national resources into “life-affirming activities,” is making its costumed pitch for, in part, as one group member’s sign stated, “Abortions on demand.”

The organization sent an urgent request weeks ago asking “activists and artists” across the nation to “submit artistic representations of vaginas” to deliver to Republican headquarters in Tampa.

“Draw out a message that the Republicans need to see bright and bold!” a Code Pink Code Red email message stated, suggesting creating vagina artwork on 8 ½ -inch by 11-inch fabric or paper.

Beyond the chuckle effect – and perhaps a spot of the “Colbert Report” – I wonder what this creepy costume party hopes to accomplish.

Yes, Code Pink is for reproductive rights. Yes, it is against some nebulously defined, Republican-led “War on Women.”

So are a lot of other liberal women. I don’t see them taking that fully committed (meant in every sense of the word) step to don a full-bodied vagina suit to get their point across.

Are these costumed protesters the “true majority?”

Next month’s Democratic Party National Convention in Charlotte will feature a who’s who of pro-abortion attendees and speakers – from Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards, NARAL Pro-Choice America president Nancy Keenan to Georgetown student Sandra Fluke. That should be enough to drive home the Democrats’ Dig Abortions platform.

But I’m guessing the gals from Code Red’s female anatomy trick-or-treat aren’t going to be front and center at the convention. Do you think Obama wants them there?

Frankly, there’s going to be enough pageantry and ceremonial silliness inside the convention to meet the nation’s banal quota. How much more can one country take?

Well, at least “Pawn Stars” is all new this week.

So far, the protests have been nothing like the Minneapolis-St. Paul melee two years ago, when thousands disrupted the Republican convention, many defying any notion of peaceful assembly amid bottle-throwing, smashed cars and hundreds of arrests.

On Sunday, a reported handful of union members screamed at Gov. Scott Walker, proclaiming that Wisconsin’s conservative icon who led changes to public-worker collective bargaining, “hates workers.”

Beyond some drum circles, the 99-percenters and some dog-loving demonstrators decrying Mitt Romney’s canine carrier, the protest movement has been relatively quiet.

Amazing what the threat of a hurricane can do to wacky, if not distracting, speech.

Walker was quick to point out Monday that demonstrators – even annoying ones – are all part of the political process.

“We saw them at the Twin Cities. You will see them at Charlotte,” the governor said during a morning press call. “That’s what’s great about America. That’s what our founders talked about … what our men and women in uniform fought for.”

Walker added that the protesters wouldn’t “trump the voices” of Republicans gathered at this week’s convention.

Code Pink, a feminist organization, protested at the Republican National Convention in Tampa donning full-bodied “vagina suits.

That is, of course, if Donald Trump doesn’t show up driving the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, tossing out free contraception to the parade of convention-goers.

Contact Kittle at [email protected]


M.D. Kittle is bureau chief of Wisconsin Watchdog and First Amendment Reporter for Watchdog.org. Kittle is a 25-year veteran of print, broadcast and online media. He is the recipient of several awards for journalism excellence from The Associated Press, Inland Press, the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association, and others. He is also a member of Investigative Reporters & Editors. Kittle's extensive series on Wisconsin's unconstitutional John Doe investigations was the basis of a 2014 documentary on Glenn Beck's TheBlaze. His work has been featured in Town Hall, Fox News, NewsMax, and other national publications, and his reporting has been cited by news outlets nationwide. Kittle is a fill-in talk show host on the Jay Weber Show and the Vicki McKenna Show in Milwaukee and Madison.

  • Cathy urrata

    Wouldnt it be funny if a mens organization did the same thing?

    They would be considered criminals.

  • Raj13

    Just liberals being classy yet again.