Stitch for Senate, launched on the day of the 4th anniversary of the US invasion of Iraq, invites knit hobbyists to craft helmet liners for every US Senator in an effort to encourage the politicians to support the troops by bringing them home.
The helmet liner pattern was adapted from a support-the-troops initiative for soldiers stationed in Iraq. Once they receive their helmet, senators can opt to send it to a soldier in Iraq or Afghanistan. Charitable knitting during wartime has been a tradition since the American Revolution. During WWII in particular, women, men and even school-age children were invited to Knit for Defense and keep troops warm.
The aim of Stitch for Senate is to start a dialogue between both sides of the Iraq war debate. “I would like people to be thinking and talking about the war a little more, and this may be one way of doing it,” explains Catherine Mazza, founder of microRevolt and adjunct professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
The website will compile testimonies from knitters seeking to understand what knitters express through wartime knitting: charity, allegiance, patriotism, resistance, radicalism, etc. and use the tradition of political organizing within knitting circles as a space for storytelling, discussion, exchange and protest.