A vigil in front of the White House was held last night by members of the Progressive Congressional Caucus, state legislators, artists, and activists against genocide in Gaza. While holding signs, participants began reading the names of Palestinian individuals killed in Gaza. Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), the only Palestinian-American member of Congress, spoke out forcefully, telling Joe Biden to listen to those demanding a ceasefire. “How many lives will be enough?” she asked. “How many more children need to be killed? How many more families have to be traumatized and torn apart? There is nothing humanitarian, my friends, about giving innocent civilians a few days of rest before they are bombed again,” she said.
Also attending was Rep. Cori Bush (D-MO), who referenced the 40 members of the House and Senate who have called for a ceasefire in Gaza. Jamal Bowman (D-NY) repeated that calling for a ceasefire was about “reaching for our common humanity.” Among the state legislators who participated were five who had begun a hunger strike on Nov. 27 to call for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza. They are joined by actor Cynthia Nixon and several faith and community leaders [Time magazine] (https://time.com/6340016/lawmakers-activists-ceasefire-gaza-hunger-strike/) reported. The five state legislators, who are on a five-day hunger strike, are from Delaware, New York, Virginia, Michigan, and Oklahoma. Delaware Rep. Madinah Wilson-Anton said she wanted to “bring attention to the fact that the U.S. government, our President, and our congressional leaders are funding this policy of starvation.”
Another group, Die-in For Humanity, is carrying out silent protests at various locations in the D.C. area, including at the White House and State Department, placing on the ground in front of the organizers small body bags, swaddled in white, spattered in blood with the name of a child killed in Gaza. Hazami Barmada, a woman of Syrian and Palestinian descent who started the Die-ins, told [Al Jazeera] (https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2023/11/28/group-stages-die-ins-across-washington-dc-to-raise-awareness-for-gaza) that “our goal is when someone walks by with their own kids, when you see body bags with children’s names and ages written on them that are the same age as your kids, it provokes a different type of emotional reaction.” She said she began the die-ins after seeing footage of a Palestinian mother whispering in her dead child’s ear in Gaza. It reminded her of how she puts her own child to sleep. “All I could imagine in that moment was: What would I do if that was my son? ... It was in that moment of deep despair, I couldn’t unsee my own child. And if I can get people here to see their own children, if I can get people here to see their own humanity tied to these body bags, then that to me is a success.”