Jesse Jackson

Code Pink occupied the Venezuelan Embassy in D.C. for several weeks, causing massive protests and anger from the ex-pat Venezuelan community.

Food and supply deliveries were blocked during the last couple of weeks of the occupation, but Jesse Jackson was allowed to come deliver food, presumably because of his ministerial status. The Venezuelans were generally saying that they respected Rev. Jackson but that he was on the wrong side of history in taking the side of Code Pink.

A couple of days after Code Pink was evicted from the embassy, they had a rally at which Jesse Jackson spoke. I believe that the Venezuelans are correct in saying that Jackson is on the wrong side of this issue, although what he was saying at this rally was not about Venezuela but instead was a general message of the need for peace, and investment in education and other supports for the community. Seeing him up close, I can see why he has been so influential in the past, radiating a combination of strength and calm. Obviously, on both this issue and some of his long history as a major public figure, there is room for many different interpretations of his legacy.

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