One woman is walking down the street in her underwear, on the back of which someone has inscribed the message “Let me be brief. Impeachment is on the table.” Another is bicycling past her on a bright pink bike, with a giant pink hat adorned with pink feathers. A third is seated on a bench waiting for the mall shuttle with a pink bumper sticker on her chest that says, “Make out, not war.”
For a party that takes pride in its diverse swath of constituents, the Democratic National Convention has been surprisingly muted visually this week. There are scores of young people who look like they graduated from Brown, Vassar, Yale or Wesleyan, and there are lots of handsome black women in their 50s. Blondes and brunettes, whites and Hispanics, young people and old people, they are all here in droves. But there is surprisingly little quirkiness, which is at least part of the reason the women of Code Pink are so hard to miss.
Born out of an opposition to Iraq, the organization since has come to form a more general progressive antiwar platform, and is raising money to help Cindy Sheehan defeat Nancy Pelosi in her race for Congress this fall.
“Sixty percent of Americans opposed the war by 2006,” said member Renay Davis, who is riding on a bus toward the organization’s temporary clubhouse: a dilapidated hippie-dippy coffee house called the Mercury Café. She’s dressed for the occasion in a bright pink fireman’s hat and enough bumper stickers on her chest to cover every car for miles. “Why aren’t people speaking out? The silent majority needs to become the vocal majority.
“People say, ‘All you do is preach to the choir. I say, ‘When did you last call your congressperson to tell them that you didn’t want more funding of the war effort? Nancy Pelosi, as speaker of the house, has not done what she could have to stop the war by stopping the funding. I’ve heard the argument that if she introduced a bill to bring the troops home, Bush would just veto it. But at least she would be doing her part.”
What Davis and her fellow members want is enough money to bring the troops home, some money for the Iraqis to begin rebuilding their country themselves and the end of contracts to government contractors such as KBR and Halliburton.
They are somewhat less dogmatic about who should be the next U.S. president. Some are in favor of Obama, partly because Hillary Clinton voted to authorize the war. “We helped paint Hillary Clinton as a war candidate, which helped give Barack Obama an edge,” said co-founder Medea Benjamin. “We went to meet with her before the war began. We told her, ‘We want to support you [in your political career].’ She gave us a rap that sounded like George W. Bush and we were left so disgusted that we gave her a pink slip instead.”
Benjamin is not speaking metaphorically. It was a giant version of the traditional piece of paper, and as the organization’s co-founder clarifies proudly a moment later, her partner in crime, Jodie Evans, actually threw it at the New York senator. (Evans’ other accomplishments include getting herself ejected from the Republican National Convention in 2004 when she interrupted the President’s speech to lambast him about the war in Iraq.)
For the record, Benjamin does not see anything strange about her organization’s categorical rejection of the first would-have-been woman president. “We’re women, we’re feminists, but to us, it’s the positions that matter, not the package they come in.”
She’s also heard the argument that the outfits of her Code Pink cohorts — the very thing that gets them so much attention — also risks turning them into a joke before they even open their mouths. But without them, she says, the organization would sink.
“Last night was boring,” she said, discussing the first night of the convention. “Then we show up and people light up because of what we wear. It’s provocative, it’s interesting. If we dressed the same as everyone else, we wouldn’t get any attention.”
Breaking News: @louisvuitton's men's artistic director @mrkimjones is leaving the French fashion house after nearly 7 years. Jones joined Louis Vuitton in 2011, following a three year tenure as creative director of British luxury goods brand Alfred Dunhill. Jones is to exit Louis Vuitton after showing his fall 2018 collection for the brand in Paris on Thursday. Read the full exclusive story on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
For men’s fall 2018, @giuseppezanotti drew on elements from streetwear, sport, biker, combat and rock ‘n’ roll. Pictured here are a pair of shoes from the collection, featuring zippers, rhinestones, and silver hardware. Head to WWD.com to see a roundup of the accessories from Milan’s men’s fall 2018 shows. #wwdfashion (📷: Andrea Delb)
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of @ralphlauren’s snowboarding collection, the brand is mining its archives. The iconic brand is reintroducing vintage styles and dropping new designs for a color capsule that will be available in Ralph Lauren stores and @openingceremony on January 25. The capsule will consist of 10 pieces, including the Snow Beach Pullover, pictured here, which is a collector’s item that rapper Raekwon wore in Wu-Tang Clan’s “Can It Be All So Simple” video. #wwdfashion (📷: Tom Gould)
For @rochasofficial’s pre-fall 2018 collection, creative director Alessandro Dell’Acqua channeled the sophisticated and intriguing Catherine Denevue in the film “Belle de Jour.” Polished collarless coats, midi skirts, suits and ’60s graphic motifs were all featured in the collection, adding a sense of discreet luxury. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion
“We tried to produce clothing of that couture quality, but the most daunting part was that we only had a matter of days [to do it],” said costume designer Lou Eyrich, who recreated Gianni Versace’s iconic looks for @americancrimestoryfx. Eyrich searched online retailers and vintage shops for original pieces from the design house and for @penelopecruzoficial, who plays Donatella Versace. Head to WWD.com to read how she created the Versace world. #wwdfashion
Only three months after her stellar debut catwalk season, @kaiagerber has inked her first big design collaboration –– with @karllagerfeld. The collection blends Lagerfeld’s Parisian chic aesthetic and the model’s signature West Coast casual style via RTW, accessories, footwear and more. The #KarlLagerfeldxKaia collection will launch in September with a series of events. Get all the details on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews