Police arrest CODEPINK

Inside Xcel, Sarah Palin is about to take the stage. Her supporters say she’s ushering in a new age of traditionalist-feminism. Meanwhile, CNN, MSNBC and even MPR reports about whether they should be reporting about her daughter’s pregnancy. But outside the arena, police and swat used the day to arrest members of CODEPINK, a female peace group known for interpretive dance.

The pink clad women space-bopped their way to a police gate just outside the Landmark Theater on Market. Then a brave four made the decision to try and crawl under the gate. Police ran in and grabbed them by their shoulders, pulled their bodies all the way through the gate, flipped them onto their stomachs, zipped plastic ties around their hands and took them away. In the background supporters yelled, “The whole world is watching! The whole world is watching!”

Jean Stevens, a CODEPINK press coordinator talked to us at the scene. Every so often she glanced over her shoulders, nervously. “The violence taking place here is palpable,” she says. “We’ve been surrounded the whole day by police and had one of our vans searched earlier this morning.”

Stevens said there is a definite difference between the behaviors of law enforcement in Denver compared to those patrolling St. Paul. She says the enforcement here is far more intense. And you got to remember that one of her members received a full body cross check in Denver. So that’s saying something.

“In Denver we could joke around a bit with the police. They were calm and very well trained,” she says. “Here, there is no joking. No respect. And instant shut-down.”

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