We Were Called “Terrorists” and Forcibly Ejected by Police from Congressional Baseball Game

Youtube screengrab.

During last week’s Congressional Baseball Game, dozens of us in the crowd conveyed urgent messages to stop funding Israel’s genocide of Palestinians and to address the escalating climate crisis. We were met by hundreds of police from different jurisdictions who encircled us during the game, and at times followed us around. Activists with Climate Defiance announced their intention to disrupt the event in advance, and, once they stormed the field, they were plowed down by police officers and arrested.

In our seats, we stood with signs, flags, some just wearing kuffiyehs, chanting “Free Palestine” and “Genocide is not a game.” Despite the legality and common practice of cheering and displaying signs at baseball games, we were swiftly ejected by swarms of police officers.

The police officers, unsurprisingly, did nothing to address the egregious verbal abuse that was hurled at us. The verbal abuse included blatantly racist taunts and profanities. In one instance, an entire section of the crowd erupted in a “f*** you terrorists” chant and in another a “USA” chant echoed across the field in response. Meanwhile, others in the stadium freely displayed their political messages without facing any consequences.

Our aim was to deliver a clear message to members of Congress, who were indulging in a game amid multiple crises they are responsible for through funding and inaction.

Since October, they have allocated billions more to Israel, facilitating the genocide of over 40,000 Palestinians in Gaza while also displacing and starving millions in Gaza.

The Israeli State has also used white phosphorus and other weapons from the United States to destroy the local environment, facilitating the death of the local habitat. Each U.S. bomb tested, manufactured, transferred, and dropped exacerbates the climate crisis, intertwining Palestine’s plight with climate justice.

Almost every congressperson who played that night voted to sanction the International Criminal Court after it issued an arrest warrant for Netanyahu.

The annual Congressional Baseball game is sponsored by a long list of companies profiting off of the Israeli and U.S.atrocities in Palestine, including: Boeing, RTX (formerly Raytheon), Caterpillar, Chevron, Amazon, Google.

The baseball event is technically a fundraiser for groups like the Boys and Girls Club, Nationals Philanthropies, and the Washington Literacy Center. It is paradoxical that Congress raises trivial amounts for education while channeling billions of tax dollars into weapons shipments used to indiscriminately murder Palestinians.

Activists across the U.S are demanding an end to all aid to Israel and a reinvestment of those funds into our community needs such as housing, healthcare, and education.

It’s not a coincidence that while arms dealers are reaping historic highs in stock prices and earnings, members of Congress are lining their pockets with massive blood-soaked checks from Israeli lobbying groups. Particularly AIPAC, the American Israeli Public Affairs Council.

While the majority of Americans want a permanent ceasefire in Gaza, our representatives use our tax to dollars to fuel their own profiteering from genocide.

More bombs were dropped in the first 100 days of the US-Israel genocide in Gaza than in all of World War II combined.

Our actions at the Congressional Baseball Game were driven by a profound sense of urgency and justice.

The systematic murder and starvation of Palestinians by Israel cannot continue with our silent complicity. We must persist in demanding accountability from our elected officials. We demand that funds from warfare be redirected to vital community needs.

We stand in solidarity with Palestinians and all others who are fighting for their lives and dignity. The struggle for justice in Palestine is not just their fight; it is a global cause that calls for our unwavering support and action.

Olivia DiNucci is an anti-militarism and climate justice organizer based in Washington DC.