Thursday, June 21, 2007

Thursday, May 24, 2007

DARFUR HEROICS: UVM HUNGER STIKE

Will we ever see people "paying the price" like this to end Darfur Genocide? Thanks Google.


UVM students end hunger strike, make deal with administrationVermont Guardian, VT - Apr 27, 2007A dozen UVM students who are part of the Student Labor Action Project (SLAP) went on a hunger strike Monday in an effort to get the school to boost wages ...
Hunger strike ends at UVMBurlingtonFreePress.com, VT - Apr 28, 2007Maron said the five-day hunger strike ended, in part, because of an "on-the-record" commitment made by UVM President Daniel Fogel to address the issue of ...
UVM students on hunger strike Demand higher wages for workersBarre Montpelier Times Argus, VT - Apr 25, 2007BURLINGTON — A dozen University of Vermont students are entering the third day of a hunger strike to demand higher wages for the university's lowest paid ...
Hunger Strike EndsWCAX, VT - Apr 27, 2007The five-day hunger strike is over at UVM. The twelve students and their supporters ate bread Friday afternoon after reaching an agreement with UVM ...
Student Hunger Strike Over Worker Wages EndsWNNE-TV, VT - Apr 27, 2007The students started the hunger strike Monday, saying they wanted workers to be paid what advocates said is a livable wage. ...
Students end hunger strike over confusion over worker payBoston Globe, MA - Apr 27, 2007BURLINGTON, Vt. --A five-day hunger strike waged by students at the University of Vermont over worker salaries ended Friday after students learned workers ...
Hunger Strikers in 4th DayWCAX, VT - Apr 26, 2007... of the 250 UVM workers not making a livable wage, say that they support the students, and say a hunger strike is an effective form of social protest. ...
UVM livable wage figures misleadingVermont Guardian, VT - May 10, 2007On April 27, twelve University of Vermont (UVM) students from the Student Labor Action Project (SLAP) ended a five-day hunger strike to urge the university ...
Strikers say they are buoyed by supportBurlingtonFreePress.com, VT - Apr 25, 2007The lowest-paid UVM workers start at $10.60 an hour. Hunger striker Max Tracy, 20, of Northbrook, Ill., said he gave an update on the hunger strike to his ...
Fogel Defends UVM WagesWCAX, VT - Apr 26, 2007The President at the University of Vermont released a statement Thursday morning about the hunger strike at the school, which has entered its fourth day. ...
Editorial: Activism blooms in fertile Vermont soilBurlingtonFreePress.com, VT - Apr 27, 2007On Monday, 12 students at the University of Vermont began a hunger strike calling on the university to offer a livable wage to its lowest-paid workers. ...
University of Vermont student protest staff wagesNewsday, NY - Apr 25, 2007BURLINGTON, Vt. -- A hunger strike being waged by students at the University of Vermont entered its third day Wednesday, with protesters saying they won't ...
Trickle Down Conservatism Infects AmericaTomPaine.com, DC - Apr 27, 2007The students, who began the hunger strike Monday, are promising to consume only water and fruit juices. UVM President Dan Fogel says the school offers some ...
UVM students confront evangelistsBurlingtonFreePress.com, VT - Apr 27, 2007... of Billings Student Center on Thursday afternoon, but the tumult had nothing to do with Day 4 of the hunger strike to push a livable wage on campus. ...

Friday, April 13, 2007

Darfur: U.S. Activism a TOTAL MORAL FAILURE

[SEE: A Hunger For Justice : Darfur Becomes One Man's Cause for Deprivation
Delphine Schrank, C01 (Post) Washington Post, April 14, 2007]

What is wrong with this nasty, angry man! Some of my brothers and sisters in the Darfur activist community must be wondering. The rest have simply written me off.

Imagine the three people in the world you love the very most. Remember how much you love them. Do it. Ok. Now imagine that 4 years ago an all powerful entity, God, came and disguised these loved ones as Darfuries beyond any hope of recognition and placed them in Darfur; and further told you that if you told anyone that your loved ones would die immediately. You are told that the only way you can save them is to stop the genocide and restore Darfuries to their lives. WOULD YOU BE ACTING ANY DIFFERENTLY THAN YOU ARE NOW?!??!?!?!?!!?!?!?!??!? You sure as hell would.

Here is the other way that I look at it. Another one of tests of accountability I hold myself to in my personal actions is to imagine myself in Heaven after I die in front of my Darfur brothers and sisters explaining what I did or did not do. I think I'll do all right in these conversations. In similar conversations with my Cambodian, Rwandan, Balkan... brothers and sisters the behaviors of mine I describe will leave me shamed and without a shred of humanity.

[US & UK have the Security Council until June 30. This is your last chance to TRULY Stand with Darfur. Join a Brigade of PeaceMakers - Darfur, NOW.]

I apply the same test when considering the behavior of my brothers and sisters in the "Save Darfur Movement (SDM)." I envision the conversation going something like this:

SDM: "Yes, we knew it was 4 years. Yes we knew 450,000 exterminated. Yes we knew 2.5 million in concentration camps of forced starvation, rape, mutilation, murder and disease. We in the US agonized for you our Darfur brothers and sisters. We had meetings, and more meetings. We fasted from luxuries for one whole day per year. ONE ENTIRE DAY - WE ABSTAINED FROM ONE OF OUR LUXURIES! On another day we formed a human chain. On another day we sent postcards. POSTCARDS! In all there were one million! We divested our Colleges and States. Sure the real money came from China but it helped a little and it gave us great connections and enhanced our resumes too! Two different sunny afternoons we went to parks for demonstrations, and we even listened to some of the speakers! Wow, we really pulled out all the stops! I mean, what else would you have wanted??!?!?!

DARFUR: "We wanted you to treat us as you would your immediate family, which before God, we are. "Do unto others, ALL that you would have done unto you." We were raped every day. Our children were starved every day. Our men were shot every day. Our women were mutilated every day. YOU DID NOTHING."

The lesson of the holocaust was entirely: IN THE FACE OF GENOCIDE THE CITIZENS OF THE WORLD IMMEDIATELY LAY DOWN THEIR VERY LIVES UNTIL IT STOPS. Eric Reeves, Brian Steidle and who else has laid down their lives for Darfur?

The great desecration of the Holocaust didn't happen last month in Iran; it has been happening in the most Holocaust educated in the world, the US, for the last 4 years as we have risked nothing, suffered nothing, sacrificed nothing. We have done nothing.

Now we repent and vote immediately with our lives, WITH OUR LIVES giving Bush an iron clad, unmistakable mandate to end this, or we are Damned, and Darfur is dead.

Original, bad thinking? Strikingly parallel to what Rabbi Abraham J. Heschel had to say in 1938, possibly the most relevant prophetic, moral writing I've ever seen. For example:

* "We have trifled with the name of God. We have taken the ideals in vain. We have called for the Lord. He came. And was ignored. We have preached but eluded Him. We have praised but defied Him. Now we reap the fruits of our failure. Through centuries His voice cried in the wilderness. How skillfully it was trapped and imprisoned in the temples! How often it was drowned or distorted! Now we behold how it gradually withdraws, abandoning one people after another, departing from their souls, despising their wisdom. The taste for the good has all but gone from the earth. Men heap spite upon cruelty, malice upon atrocity."

* "Soldiers in the horror of battle offer solemn testimony that life is not a hunt for pleasure, but an engagement for service; that there are things more valuable than life; that the world is not a vacuum. Either we make it an altar for God or it is invaded by demons. "

* "The Almighty has not created the universe that we may have opportunities to satisfy our greed, envy and ambition. We have not survived that we may waste our years in vulgar vanities. The martyrdom of millions demands that we consecrate ourselves to the fulfillment of God’s dream of salvation. Israel did not accept the Torah of their own free will. When Israel approached Sinai, God lifted up the mountain and held it over their heads, saying: “Either you accept the Torah or be crushed beneath the mountain.

”The mountain of history is over our heads again. Shall we renew the covenant with God?"

See updates at all sites:

DARFUR'S LAST HOPE: Brigade of PeaceMakers: for Darfur. JOIN NOW
SAVING DARFUR, EARTH, OURSELVES: Jesus, God, Good...
REAL ACTIVISM LOOKS LIKE THIS: Holocaust Rescuers
REAL ACTIVISM LOOKS LIKE THIS: Peace and Nonviolence
REAL ACTIVISM LOOKS LIKE THIS: David Dellinger
4 DARFUR HEROES; 21,000 FOR HOLOCAUST: Darfur Dying for Heroes
HUNGER STRIKE: Stand with Darfur: Sudan Embassy
WE'RE PROOF OF NO GENOCIDE: Darfur Genocide a Fraud
Actions 6/06 - 1/07: Stand With Darfur White House II
Actions 5/06 - 6/06: Stand With Darfur White House
Actions 7/05 - 5/06: Rescue Restore Darfur

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Darfur Hunger Strike Day 22. Final Farewell.

My dear brothers and sisters around the world. As noted below I've been away from the 24 h/day Sudan Embassy Darfur Hunger strike for more than a day now to deal with a wrongful arrest that seems to be dropped. This has given me access to computer that I'll not have on the sidewalk of the Embassy. I expect this is my final goodbye to you as I'll spend what is left of my body trying to thaw el-Bashir's heart on his Embassy sidewalk.

You still don't see it. Saving Darfur is about saving your world. Darfur is a mortal wound on the humanity of your Soul, and the Soul of your global brothers and sisters. Leaving it un-Rescued and un-Restored is bleeding away from you whatever bit of Heart / Humanity / Sanity you've had left in this cesspool / toxic dump of a selfish world.

Your Heart will not survive much more of this. You need to get off of your death-bed now. Draw on your Heart. Through exercise it will regain strength - quickly.

Otherwise, you have once and for all lost planet earth to the end times. You will give Living Hell to your children.

May God help you.

Your loving brother forever, Start Loving

Monday, March 12, 2007

PRESS RELEASE: Darfur Hunger Strike Moves to Sudan Embassy 24 Hours Per Day

Darfur Hunger Strike Moves to Sudan Embassy 24 Hours Per Day Until el-Bashir Regains His Humanity

Washington, DC March 12, 2007 Darfur Hunger Strike day thirteen moves to the Sudan Embassy tomorrow at about noon where the striker intends to remain until Sudan President el-Bashir regains his humanity and brings full and generous protection, relief and restoration to his tortured Darfur family. Start Loving, previously known as Jay McGinley, has attempted to end the Darfur Genocide since May 14, 2006 by vigiling 134 days at and around the White House, accompanying this with 60 days of water-only hunger strike.

Loving, an executive in the computer industry turning around failing organizations most of his adult life, is also a trained psychological counselor and was on the management team of a small retail chain in Philadelphia until May 13, 2006 when he gave up everything to fight nonviolently in DC for his Darfur family.

“I appeal to the heart, to the humanity, to the Immortal Soul of my brother el-Bashir,” said Loving. “Al-Bashir is headed toward a place in history alongside Adolph Hitler, George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Zionists and Pol Pot. He has the blood of millions on his hands. I hope to give my life, if that is required, in an attempt to awaken his heart in time to save my brother and some of our Darfur brothers and sisters. I hope to find the heroism and courage of my blessed brother and sister U.S. Soldiers who willingly give their Lives in Iraq for others, as mistaken as their beliefs may be.”

According to the faith based SaveDarfur.org coalition, “not since the Rwandan genocide of 1994 has the world seen such a calculated campaign of displacement, starvation, rape, and mass slaughter... Darfur has been embroiled in a deadly conflict for over three years. At least 400,000 people have been killed; more than 2 million innocent civilians have been forced to flee their homes and now live in displaced-persons camps in Sudan or in refugee camps in neighboring Chad; and more than 3.5 million men, women, and children are completely reliant on international aid for survival.”

Loving faces added difficulties in his Sudan Embassy Hunger Strike campaign including a record of arrests for peacefully demonstrating at the Pentagon, Federal Court House and the White House. Despite more than 60 nonviolent, all night vigils in front of the White House acknowledged by the police to be lawful and admirable, in late January of 2007 a rogue police officer, under the cloak of darkness, harassed and then arrested Loving for sitting up under a tree holding Darfur posters; just as Loving had done on the previous nights. Loving's court date for this arrest is March 21st and the Sudan Embassy Hunger Strike will preclude attendance at this hearing.

Additionally, Loving is completely without support or backing for his campaign which will make his campaign more difficult to survive for any significant length of time. On previous strikes Loving has had access to water , bathroom facilities and the protection of Lafayette Park Officers. Additionally, without support Loving has no knowledge or experience to guide him regarding the potential behavior of police. Despite the fact that he will be entirely nonviolent it is unknown what police action may be mounted by the various law enforcement agencies.

“Time is long past “up” for our Darfur family, and for the Soul of my brother el-Bashir” said Loving. “I have no illusion that my efforts will make any difference, but that is not my responsibility. Our Father calls us to be faithful, not successful. As best I can tell Our Father, Humanity, Conscience, Love, whatever you call it demands that we risk everything we have to awaken a Saving Love, Brotherhood, Humanity in a brother, el-Bahsir, in the face of such suffering and atrocity. This is my best attempt.”

Contact:
Start Loving – Man seeking to end Darfur Genocide
Sudan Embassy Sidewalk, 2210 Massachusetts Ave, NW., Washington, DC
start_loving@yahoo.com (expected to be unattended during this Darfur Hunger Strike campaign.
Further information: www.StandWithDarfurWhiteHouseII.blogspot.com (all blogs at “Complete Profile”).
Attachment: Letter to el-Bashir

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

DARFUR: GLOBAL FAST. Nothing less will save them now, or us.

We are clearly settling for another Rwanda.

There is an option. GLOBAL, GRASS ROOTS RESCUE-DARFUR-FAST-TILL-GENOCIDE-STOPS.

More at: DARFUR Dying for Heroes

Or, we will have nothing less but, regrets.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Darfur Vigil Day #23, June 5: Darfur Dies for want of 1 question

23rd day in DC / Holocaust Museum / White House on round the clock vigil to Rescue and Restore Darfur

Our Darfur "family" dies for want of the question that WOULD BE OUR PERSONAL CENTRAL QUESTION were it not for the " "; that is, if Darfurians REALLY WERE LIKE OUR FAMILY (like most religions say they should be?). OUR Life depends on seeing them as such - family.

WHAT TYPE OF MIRACLE MUST I PERSONALLY TRY TO SPARK so that we, WE, RESCUE AND RESTORE DARFUR, NOW? If we saw them as our family, we wouldn't know how NOT to be consumed and mobilized, and transformed by this question. Some "rescuers" made a leap similar to this during the Holocaust; and now we must learn the make the same leap.

But we CAN'T do it by ourselves! There is the whole US Forces would endanger Darfur thing! Let's not get distracted. If they WERE OUR FAMILY, we would find a way, NOW. Come on, with all our recent decline in influence, WE ARE STILL AMERICA (unconscionably resourceful.)

What would we do?

1. We (WE THE PEOPLE, some of us) would PLAN how to do it, fast. We would devise an answer to: WHAT IT WILL TAKE, NOW? A perfect plan? No. As Eisenhower said, "Plans are WORTHLESS, Planning is EVERYTHING."

2. WE-THE-PEOPLE WOULD GET OFF OF OUR BUTTS, INTO THE STREETS AND STAY THERE SO AS TO UNMISTAKEABLY DEMONSTRATE OUR WILL TO OUR ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES - TO GIVE THEM THE COURAGE TO ACT. Ok, maybe some of us would intelligently go to streets of Europe to raise will there. BUT WE WOULD START TALKING LESS, AND ACTING, DEMONSTRATING MORE.

3. This is unrealistic! They are not our family. THEY ARE OUR FAMILY, AND IT WOULD BE AN IMMESURABLE JOY FOR US TO SEE THAT AND ACT ACCORDINGLY. THE MOTIVATION OF TAKING THIS STEP CAN SAVE AMERICA. Missing this step may be to miss our last chance to save ourselves.

Let's stop killing time, and get on with it.

By the way, THERE ARE ANGELS. Met this one today. Before graduating college in May she was a strong advocate for Darfur on her campus: Brought John Pendergast to speak, brought 4o people to the April 30 Rally for Darfur on the Mall. And, when she asked and I told her I had not received a meal for 3 days, she brought dinner. Hmmmm. Thank you dear.





Sunday, June 04, 2006

Darfur Vigil Day #22, June 4: Did you ever sacrifice McDonnalds for Outback Steakhouse?

On the streets of Washington DC, away from White House for just 2 more days on (arduous) special assignment.

Hmmmm. Sorry for the analogy using juicy meat - I've been pretty much vegetarian for quite some time. But it is the analogy that comes to me.

Did you: Did you ever sacrifice McDonnalds for Outback Steakhouse? I mean, you had a choice like this? You could have gone to McDonnalds but you preferred and chose Outback Steakhouse; or something like this? You chose GREAT/TIME TAKING/EXPENSIVE/COSTLY/SACRIFICE over Good/OK/Easy/Fast/Cheap.

AND, YOU WERE GLAD YOU DID!!!!!!!!!!!

AND, YOU PROBABLY RECOMMEND IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AND YOU PROBABLY DO IT AGAIN, AND AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AND YOU PROBABLY SACRIFICE A LOT TO DO SO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

That's how it is with STAND WITH DARFUR - WHITE HOUSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I chose GREAT/TIME TAKING/EXPENSIVE over Good/OK/Easy/Fast/Cheap.

The JOY, PEACE, PURPOSE, HUMANITY, HUMAN UNITY, DISCIPLESHIP, GOODNESS, HELPFULNESS-FOR-DARFUR, CHANCE AT A MIRACLE is so overwhelming that it obliterates any thoughts or concerns for what I sacrificed to have this LIFE.

For me it required sacrificing Good/OK/Easy/Fast/Cheap ACTIONS FOR DARFUR. Well, not really. I can still do many of the cheap ones down here in DC. No, I can't do them locally in PA where I lived.

For me it required sacrificing Good/OK/Easy/Fast/Cheap - COMFORT/SAFETY/SECURITY: a home (for the streets and a bench), time with family (pretty isolated here; so far? :-) ), insurance (all my funds have gone toward this effort), food (kind people have lovingly supplied about 700 calories per day, but not more), position (I ran a prestigious retail store), American Dream, safety (pretty exposed on the streets), security (no idea what tomorrow will bring. Thy will be done), social acceptability, normalcy (ok, I left that behind years ago)....

I'VE SACRIFICED EXISTENCE in exchange for LIFE!!!!! I am radically nonviolent. (Yes I advocate NATO or UN Chapter 7, just as Gandhi advocated KILLING if it was the only means to stop a madman (Sudan's government are madmen).) But I can absolutely identify with General George Patton: "I love war... . Peace [would] be hell for me." LIFE IS A WAR. ALL LIFE IS A WAR - A WAR AGAINST CANCER; A WAR AGAINST ENTROPY; A WAR AGAINST DESTRUCTION. As Dr. King wrote, "A man is not fit to live, unless he knows what he would die for."

If I, or you, ARE NOT AT WAR for LIFE, WE ARE NOT ALIVE. We may be existing, but are not alive.

The above is not from my head, but from my heart. There has not been a second in the last 3 weeks when my choice of GREAT over GOOD has been called to question by my sacrifice. The last time you went to Outback (or whatever) was your enjoyment diminished by the ENORMOUS COST? No. What you got was infinitely better than what you sacrificed. What you got was so GREAT that it held your attention away from awareness of sacrifice. That's how it is with DOING GOOD. As Teresa of Calcutta said: "I have learned the paradox that if I love until it hurts, there is no more hurt; there is only more love." This is not metaphysics - it is neurophysics. (Will we ever learn this in time for Darfur?)

OH MY GOD!!!!!!!! ON THIS BASIS ALONE - THE SHEER JOY OF IT - I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT. STAND WITH DARFUR - AT THE WHITE HOUSE, OR AT YOUR STATE HOUSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! STAND UNTIL YOU SEE THAT THE DARFURIES WILL BE LOVINGLY RESTORED.

ALL THAT IS STANDING IN OUR WAY IS LACK OF THE WILL, IS THE COURAGE, IS CLEAR VISION OF GREAT OVER GOOD (ABOVE). STAND THAT YOU WILL GIVE THE COURAGE TO OTHERS, OUR LEADERS AND FELLOWS, TO DO WHAT THEY KNOW THEY MUST DO, THAT THEY WANT TO DO.

STAND WITH DARFUR, for LIFE.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Darfur Vigil Day #21, June 3: What Darfur Genocide Looks Like

From PROTECT DARFUR



















This is what our response looks like:
















Something is wrong with this picture.

Let's STAND WITH DARFUR at the WHITE HOUSE in support of RESCUE AND RESTORE.

WHY WON'T SOMEONE TELL ME!!! Why shouldn't, mustn't our behavior look EVERY BIT AS URGENT, COURAGEOUS AND COMMITTED as this? NOW?...








BECAUSE IT MUST. IT SHOULD. ANYTHING LESS IS - GENOCIDE.

Let's do it for Darfur. Let's do it for us. It is almost too late.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Darfur Vigil Day #20, June 2: What if there were an Army?

DC area on the last 2 days (?) of the project away from the White House Darfur Vigil

If there were an army of us for Darfur - Standing With Darfur at the White House in vigil, fast, and or hunger strike - the Genocide would stop. That is why I am here. That is why I am here, despite being alone. As Dr. King said (I paraphrase), 'Doing what is right, is right even if no one knows about it."

Sure, during the course of the day it will flash through my mind - what are you doing here in DC in a Stand With Dafur all by yourself? Reason would suggest several possiblities:

1. That this Stand With Darfur is correctly recognized by others as a mistaken, futile, irrelevent, inappropriate, counterproductive campaign.
2. That we have not allowed ourselves the honest thought to evaluate the worthiness of such a PERSONALLY COSTLY campaign for Darfur, as an instinctive defense against being drawn in.
3. Participation in such a Stand With Darfur would be a direct violation of that religion in which we have supreme faith - Stockpiling Money for the safety, comfort and pleasure of Me and Mine.
4. Our culture so dismisses our humanity as irrelevent and not useful that our humanity is all but non existant thru extreme attrophy from non-exercise. Hence, we can look at a Stand WITH Darfur and see - nothing.

Honestly, #1 above does NOT seem the correct answer. I find that #2-4 are the explanation as to why I fight alone thus far.

In terms of humanity, we in the West are all but dead; and the people in Darfur are all but dead. But not entirely. I am drawn to exercise my humanity for the shred of hope that holds for the Restoration of our Darfur family, and for the revitalization of my US family.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Darfur Vigil Day #19, June 1: IF YOUR LIFE LOOKS "NORMAL," YOU ARE NOT STOPPING GENOCIDE

On the streets of DC, working to bring the special assignment to a close, that return to the White House Darfur Vigil can be achieved.

GENOCIDE, UNCHECKED, IS NORMAL; IS THE RESULT OF NORMAL.

THE FOLLOWING IS EXTREMELY PHILOSOPHICAL FOR A BLOG SUCH AS THIS. Yes, it will distract and disengage most readers. BUT IT MAY BE MORE INSTRUCTIVE TO WHY WE NEVER HAVE STOPPED GENOCIDE, THAN IS ANYTHING ELSE POSTED IN THIS BLOG. We that want Genocide to stop must face, grasp, and embrace the following concepts.

(Maybe I will re-write or remove this "uncharacteristically esoteric" entry when I can get some objective distance. It is 1:15 a.m. and yes, I've had little sleep in quite a few days. On the other hand, that is what it takes?)

WE CAN'T GET THERE FROM HERE. I'll try to explain. This has to do with why we never have stopped genocide - it is because of how we view the world; a mistaken view of "reality."

Yes, what I am doing here in DC is ABSURD, MADNESS. I see that. You should see my physical appearance! "Wild man of Borneo!" Yes, and my countenance is becoming quite wild to the eye, as well. I see this, in the mirror AND my mind's eye, and it brings what I've just mentioned to MY MIND!!!! I look wild! Crazy! Bizarre.

But then, these glimpses of myself also bring to my mind the scripture where Jesus speaks of John Baptist:
"Jesus began to say to the crowds about John,"What did you come out into the desert to see?A reed shaken by wind?But what did you come out to look at?A person in soft clothes?Look, the ones used to soft things are in the houses of the kings.But why did you come out?To look at a prophet?Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet.This is the one about whom it has been written: Look, I send my messenger ahead of you,who will prepare your way before you.
"Amen, I tell you, there has not arisen among those born of women anyone greater than John the Baptist...."

NO, I'm not having "Jay is John the Baptist" fantasies. The point is 'coming out of one reality, that another reality can become possible, or likely.' The point is NOT me, any more than the West Coast of the US is about Louis & Clark. Lewis & Clark were simply among those who first went to the West Coast. By leaving what was "normal" and traveling West so far, THEY ARRIVED AT THE COAST OUT OF NECESSITY. The only way they could have escaped arriving there, was to NOT REALLY TRAVEL SO FAR WEST!!! Now MANY folks have followed L&C and are out west now, and presumably better off for recognizing and embracing the L&C discovery. THE POINT IS THAT WE HAVE TO COME OUT OF THE WORLD WE HAVE CONCEIVED OF, AND LIMITED OURSELVES TO, TO RESCUE AND RESTORE DARFUR. Otherwise, we can't get there from here; we can't Rescue and Restore Darfur by doing life the way we always have done it.

WE HAVE NEVER STOPPED GENOCIDE BECAUSE OF THE WORLD WE HAVE CHOSEN TO VALUE, AS WE HAVE CHOSEN TO CONSTRUCT, VALUE AND CONSTRAIN OURSELVES BY IT. "IT IS OUR VALUE SYSTEM, STUPID." IF YOUR LIFE FEELS NORMAL,YOU ARE NOT STOPPING GENOCIDE.

Jay "looks" like what a revered, heroic "soldier" in an outlying Pacific Island may have looked like during WWII. Am I more hopeful to our little friend, to our little brother, now that I have left the "world" and gone to my post on that Pacific Island? YES.

IMAGINE HOW "CRAZY" we would have thought our factious "soldier on the Pacific Island" if instead of going there, he said, "I'm going to fight for the US! And I'm going to do it as a furrier in Hoboken, NJ!" INSANE. Just as it is insane to say, "I'm going to stop Genocide for the first time in history! And I am going to do it as a 9-5 intern, professional, or even volunteer, living a "normal" life.

"NORMAL LIFE" CAN BE EXPECTED TO PRODUCE NORMAL RESULTS! NORMAL RESULTS ARE - GENOCIDE.

Why is the insanity (or hypocrisy) of our factious furrier (above) so obvious? Because his behavior is viewed from the perspective of FIGHTING TO PROTECT ME AND MINE! It is NORMAL to do extreme things in the service of ME AND MINE!

Why does Jay's behavior look so crazy??!?!?! Because we look at his behavior in the light of serving ME AND MINE. AND WE DEFINE ME AND MINE IN BIOLOGICAL TERMS!

To stop Genocide, we have to STOP DEFINING, AND EXPERIENCING "ME AND MINE" IN BIOLOGICAL TERMS.

Darfur Vigil Day #18, May 31: Lonely battle

On the streets of DC; still on special assignment away from the White House Darfur Vigil for a few more days

For reasons of heightened effectiveness I wish I were not fighting alone. Among radically committed fellows I could be more sure, faster, more effective.

But as I struggle to comprehend this battle to Rescue and Restore Darfur and what I am called to contribute at this juncture - RADICAL BROTHERHOOD STANDING "WITH" DARFUR NO MATTER THE COST - I am at peace that I am doing what I am called to do, as best as I can. If others, or enough others, were contributing this piece right now, I wouldn't be alone, but my attempts wouldn't be as needed either.

No one else thinks my attempts are needed?!?!!?!?!? :-) Yes, with just a few exceptions, I am sure this is QUITE the perception!

At times like this one might find appropriate comfort in the words of Deitrich Bonhoeffer:

“Who stands fast? Only the man whose final standard is not his reason, his principles, his conscience, his freedom, or his virtue, but who is ready to sacrifice all this when he is called to obedient and responsible action in faith and in exclusive allegiance to God – the responsible man, who tries to make his whole life an answer to the question and call of God.”

If only the fate of 2,000,000 of our Darfur family were at stake, this crazy (futile?) attempt on my part would be acceptable. But MUCH MORE IS AT AT STAKE. THIS IS A PIVOTAL OPPORTUNITY FOR THE US, AND FOR MANKIND.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Darfur Vigil Vigil Day #17, May 30: THE USA's FINEST HOUR? To Rescue Darfur we must make it so.

Washington DC (but away from the White House on a special project for a few more days)

Yes, I am very tired. A special project is allowing for little sleep for a few days now, and then in quite uncomfortable upright sitting position (the rules in public spaces :-) ). The following may be the addled thinking of one that is fatigued. THE FOLLOWING MAY BE INSPIRED VISION OF ONE THAT IS FULLY COMMITTED AND WHO HAS THE TIME TO PRAY/PONDER/STUDY/PERSEVERE 24/7.

DARFUR COULD PROMPT OUR FINEST HOUR as a nation, as a people. DARFUR COULD PROMPT US TO CHANGE DIRECTION FROM DEATHLY, CANCEROUS SELFISHNESS BACK TOWARD LIFE-GIVING PRINCIPAL, COMPASSION AND CONTRIBUTION.

No, this is not an idle thought out of the blue. It is not wishfull thinking. It comes from immersion in the History of Genocide (Power's, "Problem from Hell"), in the last 2 months news regarding Darfur campaigns, and from a review of today's horriffic, daunting news from around the world regarding Darfur on passionofthepresent.org.

The realization THAT WE COULD BE AT THE BRINK OF OUR FINEST HOUR, A TURNING POINT TOWARD A NATION OF NEVER-BEFORE-SEEN HUMANITY, THE FULFILLMENT OF OUR FOREFATHER'S VISION, is the confluence of:

1. As a US people we have gone way beyond any prior group in 100 years toward standing FOR a people suffering Genocide. WE ARE INVOLVED.
*The administration and congress have gone way beyond - declaring Genocide, deploying top level personel, leading the world in aid. Miraculous.
*Faith Organizations of Every Belief have gone way beyond in encouraging the administration to take an aggressive stand.
*Students and citizens have gone way beyond in encouraging institutions, the administration, and other citizens to Rescue people suffering Genocide.

2. To realize our dream of Rescuing and Restoring Darfur we must become - HEROICALLY COMMITTED - we must stand WITH a persecuted people. It will take no less than an unprecidented humanitarian commitment. I will defer to the historians (I am not one), but I suspect it is true that when one looks at the net, altruistic/compassionate/humanity COMMITMENT that is demanded in the face of ZERO immediate "national interest", if we RESCUE AND RESTORE DARFUR we will have mustered and committed a level of HUMANITY NEVER BEFORE SEEN FROM THIS, OR ANY OTHER COUNTRY IN HISTORY.
*We must stand up to, and back down other world powers - China, Russia and France - from their obstruction of humanity for Darfur.
*The level of financial commitment with no hope of return is astronomical for the requisite aid an peace keeping support. The humanitarian requirements are gargantuan, and exploding.
*The level of MORAL LEADERSHIP REQUIRED OF THE US, with nothing but the hope of ZERO NATIONAL REWARDS, is heroic.
*The level of LEADERSHIP, SACRIFICE FOR OTHERS, AND COMMITMENT required of WE THE PEOPLE is unparalleled.

But were we to persevere and prevail, for whom would it be the greater miracle, Darfur, USA, all FUTURE GENERATIONS OF HUMANITY?

In our response to the needs of Dafur, is this the great turningpoint for humankind? One way or the other?

THE BRINK OF OUR FINEST HOUR? Nothing less will Rescue and Restore Darfur. Nothing less will save our soul; our future?

Great conversation at 1am this morning. Thanks fellas. Keep on!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Day #16, May 29: Devastating Darfur Disappointment

Elsewhere besides the White House for the most part.

The news from Eric Reeves that the Darfur "Peace Agreement" is a stall tactic, a paper tiger, an empty rescue convoy - is devestating for Darfur. I'm wrestling with what to do, how to help. Still in DC, but called away from the White House for a while.

Family came to visit me yesterday. That was wonderful. Met a young woman that has just biked accross country with a group raising $90,000 for a noble 3rd world oriented Physicians group.

The joy of spending all efforts directly towards helping others feels like "home."



Sunday, May 28, 2006

Day 15, May 28: Mass Murder by Deception; BY U S

My point is not to accuse individuals. That just is not important right now; it would be a distraction. It would kill more time.

Besides, the problem is We The People – the deceivers rightly perceive that WE DON’T WANT THE TRUTH. This has been the way of EVERY OTHER GENOCIDE. It is WHY GENOCIDE HAPPENS.

My point is to bring to light what is happening. Those with any interest in Darfur have had hope, optimism for weeks now due to the “Peace Agreement” that was negotiated. Yes, anyone with any sense had severe reservations about the agreement – that Sudan would not observe it, that the international community would not implement the 20,000 peace keepers, or would not implement them in time.

BUT IT LOOKS LIKE THIS AGREEMENT WAS ALL A DECEPTION! A deception that will:
1. Allow Khartoum to finish the job at whatever pace they wish – solidifying the genocide – the sterilization, the cleansing of Darfur;
2. Allow the US Government (State Dept, Presidency, Congress…) to win political support for their fine efforts;
3. Allow the US Government to avoid the risks and costs of ACTUALLY RESCUING AND RESTORING DARFUR.

Read the recent New Republic publication by The Hero of Darfur - Eric Reeve, Smith College - and see if you can retain any optimism for the recent Peace Process. Read Reeve’s work and see if you can stifle your outrage; your horror; your despair.

China and Russia. Did you too wonder why they had finally allowed talk of 20,000 UN peace keepers?!?!?!?!!? EASY! THE PEACE KEEPERS ARE TO BE AUTHORIZED AT A LEVEL THAT COULDN’T DO ANYTHING BUT WATCH!!!!!!! AT THE LEVEL OF PLANNED AUTORIZATION THEY COULD NOT APPROACH, COULD NOT BROACH, WOULD BE LIGH-YEARS AWAY FROM THE ALL IMPORTANT TASK OF DISARMING THE JANJAWEED.

WINDOW DRESSING. TOTAL IMPOTENCE.

KILLING TIME.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Day #14, May27: When a thought kills

White House

What is killing folks in Darfur? A thought. Our thought, we in the US. I don’t share this to make us feel bad. I share this to help awaken us that WE CAN RESCUE AND RESTORE THESE FOLKS.

The proof? Who can doubt that if Citizens and Digitaries filled President’s Park, FILLED IT, on Hunger Strike in solidarity with Darfur, Standing WITH Darfur, that the UN troops would be on the ground FAST? IF you need to multiply this times 10 major cities, I’m ok with that. Fill a park with hunger strikers in 10 major cities if you need to.

The point is, WE THE PEOPLE CAN STOP THIS IF WE WANT TO. IF IT DOES NOT STOP, IT IS BECAUSE WE DON’T WANT TO.

The thought that kills? THAT WE CAN’T STOP THIS GENOCIDE; that it is up to the government, the UN, China, Russia, France. NO. We in the US, WE THE PEOPLE, have enough power. What is stopping us? The thought that we can’t. That it is up to someone else.





Day #13 May 26: A Vigil

White House

A day or so before coming to Washington I was taking to my friend. Although much younger than me, this friend has been more of a social activist than I. My sense was that I was headed on a Vigil, but I mentioned that I didn't really know what Vigil meant.

My friend said that vigil was like what a mother did when a child was sick; and that a vigil is what people do over a dead person. To this I said, I like the first one, but not the one about the dead person.

Well, what I am doing is somewhere in between. I am vigiling over the people in Darfur, and they are dying. We can save them, but so far, we are not. They are dying - not for lack of words, bills, resolutions, trips, blogs, news.... but for lack of action; for lack of people standing WITH Darfur.

But also, I am Vigiling over my fellow man, primarily in the US. In this case, it is like I am vigiling over someone in a coma. This is not unlike the theme in Gandhi's Bible, "The Kingdom of God is Within You," by Leo Tolstoy.

It is unlikely that someone will awake from a coma, but miracles happen. I believe in Miracles. A Miracle is what it will take to Rescue and Restore Darfur.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Day #12 May 25: Are there no Rescuers?

Holocaust Museum, White House

As I worked to prepare for a meeting with the executive of a leading organization in the effort against Darfur Genocide, distilling my thoughts was a priority.What distilled was a simple definition of the problem - what's killing Darfur: FEW IF ANY RESCUERS.

"Rescuers" is a term used by Eva Fogelman, "Conscience and Courage," to describe the select few individuals that saved Jews during the Holocaust - an estimated 10,000 of the overall population in Germany, for example, stepped up to be Rescuers. How many in the US stepped up? It seems to me we have made not progress since the Holocaust toward the all important objective of raising Rescuers. This must be a profound sadness for folks such as the US Holocaust Museum.

I shared this analysis with the executive - that More Rescuers is what would have reduced or eliminated the Holocaust; that no Rescuers is the reason for Darfur genocide uninterrupted. At first I think he was hurt. I think he would have liked to have been included in my calculations as one. I stated my guess that Eric Reeves - Smith professor dying of leukemia but working heroically to write about Darfur - was the only one I saw.

By the end of our brief conversation I think he saw some use and hope in seeing that the metric of - how many rescuers? - is a useful way to look at Darfur, or any genocide.

Rescuers is what can help. Rescuers is what we must be. Rescuers is what we must create / cause. Rescuers is what we lack. Rescuers Rescue for Love, because they can't NOT rescue; not for money. Their efforts are heroic, radically self-sacrificing acts; not because it is their Job.Where are the Rescuers for Darfur? What is wrong with us? If we were a country of Christians, wouldn't there be as many Rescuers as there are of us? Wasn't Jesus a Rescuer? Wouldn't His followers be?

My thanks to the wonderful folks that stopped by and expressed compassion for Darfur. Let's restore Darfur.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Day #11 May 24: Very Discouraging, NO RESCUERS

Holocaust Museum

I go thru cycles like this as I probe, gain information, rethink, re-understand…. But today is a down day.

Why? Hmmm. Partly, a bit of unfounded euporia as my vision clarified on the nature of our problem. Partly, in testing that new clarity with some folks I had hope for here in DC… THUD. Is the clarity incorrect? No. What I learn is that even the most alive of us is all but dead.

There are no Rescuers. There may be none that can even find the strength or humanity to entertain the idea.

Great thanks to the folks who can at least bear contemplating Darfur for the moment:

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Day #10 May 23: Clarity and Progress

Soon I'll share the clarity that came today regarding the message I am to communicate, given the chance, to organizations and leaders here in the city. It is fairly exciting and hopeful. Will it be really helpful? Will it change things? It could.

And, to his credit, a senior individual in a prominent anti-Genocide group here in town has agreed to meet with me to discuss. Upon learning of his intention to meet I sent him detail. Hopefully we still will meet. We should.

WE ARE SO CLOSE TO SAVING DARFUR. WE ARE SO FAR FROM SAVING DARFUR.

A small part of the clarity that I've now fleshed out so that others might see what haunts me is the following that I believe to be truth: NORMALITY IN THE FACE OF GENOCIDE IS FATAL.
In fact, I think this is the central finding of Samatha Power's detailed study of genocide in the last 100 years.

Let's pray, that I am wrong, and Restoration for Darfur is already at hand, OR, let us pray that someone helps get us on track to do so. 2,000,000 lives are out of time. Even after the forcefully negotiated "peace agreement" 2 weeks ago, Sudan is already backpeddling. THIS IS A VERY OMINOUS SIGN. WE SHOULD ASSUME THAT THIS MEANS THEY HAVE DECIDED TO EXTERMINATE THE REMAINING 2,000,000. That is what Genocidal regeimes do when they realize that they are running out of time.

Many wonderful folks concerned about Darfur in President's park from all over - Canada, Columbia, Oregon, NY, Ohio, France.... Most seem passionate about doing their part to Rescue and Restore their Darfur family to thier land and life:









AU: Troops needed in 2 months not September

The African Union on Tuesday suggested that United Nations peacekeeping troops should be sent to Sudan's Darfur region within two months to bolster a peace accord and prevent the humanitarian crisis from worsening.

AU commission chairperson Alpha Oumar Konare, flanked by British Prime Minister Tony Blair, told a press conference in London that the accord sealed in Abuja, Nigeria "will be credible if we can ensure the commitment becomes a reality."

So we must lose no more time because if there is any doubt, everything then can be questioned," Konare said."

And we mustn't forget the humanitarian aspects. In two months it will be the rainy season. If confidence doesn't reign again then ... the situation could really worsen," the French-speaking Konare said through an interpreter.

He added that he hoped a UN mission could be on the ground "as soon as possible",

A Guardian Angel


The kindnesses from Thomas and his family are endless. What a friend to our cause.



Blessed are the poor. Blessed are the Peacemakers.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Day #9 May 22: NYT - Darfur's Fleeting Moment

Op-Ed Contributor

Darfur's Fleeting Moment
By ANTHONY LAKE and FRANCIS FUKUYAMA
Washington

FOR three years, despite the official rhetoric and the growing public support for bold international action to end the first genocide of the 21st century, Darfur has largely remained a neglected tragedy.

Until now. With the signing of a peace agreement in Nigeria on May 5, Darfur, in western Sudan, faces a new and more hopeful prospect. Although two of the main rebel groups did not sign the accord, the Sudanese government and the largest insurgent faction did. President Bush's support of the peace process deserves applause, as does Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick's leadership at the negotiating table.

But as recent fighting between the rebel factions makes painfully clear, this significant achievement is in reality a window of opportunity that could close soon, leaving Darfur still more gravely afflicted. If the piece of paper signed in Nigeria does not quickly produce tangible progress toward peace, including protection for Darfur's people from both the government-backed janjaweed militia and the rebels, more than diplomatic momentum will be lost. Deepened anger and despair could defeat future efforts at peace and provide fertile ground for the seeds of military conflict and even terrorism, as demonstrated by Al Qaeda's recent threat to take jihad to Sudan.

Last Tuesday, the United Nations Security Council unanimously passed a resolution supporting the peace agreement and created a team to prepare for a peacekeeping mission that will take over from the African Union force in Darfur.

To seize the moment, the Bush administration should go beyond calling for urgency at the United Nations in planning a peacekeeping force. It should also give the government of Sudan a brief time in which to accept such a force. Sudan has said it would do so once there was a peace agreement, but has waffled in recent statements. It must be held to its words.

Mr. Bush should also now get ready the logistics, intelligence and headquarters assistance that the United States could provide to such a force. Showing we are prepared to act quickly should help persuade the United Nations to move smartly itself.

President Bush could join President Olusegun Obasanjo of Nigeria, who was instrumental in pushing through the peace agreement, in personally soliciting pledges of troops for a United Nations force. While NATO itself will not be accepted by the Sudanese government, why not include alliance members in a United Nations operation?

And Washington should make it clear that if Sudan refuses to accept a United Nations force, we will press NATO to act even without the consent of the Sudanese government — including a no-flight zone to ground the Sudanese aircraft that have provided support to the murderous janjaweed. And we would bring further sanctions to bear.

While recent sanctions by the United States and the United Nations against four Sudanese men involved in the genocide are a step in the right direction, far more expansive measures should be taken against the high-level propagators of genocide based in Sudan's capital, Khartoum, if they block a United Nations force. Beyond multilateral sanctions, the United States could work with countries where Sudanese officials have assets or hope to travel to impose penalties on them.

Meanwhile, the humanitarian crisis grows more desperate. As the needs grow, money to meet them has dwindled. The World Food Program is halving daily rations to Darfurian refugees to a dangerous 1,050 calories a day. Unicef is being forced to scale back its operations, including its nutritional programs for children. The president has asked Congress to increase food aid to Sudan by $225 million. That request must be put on a fast track.

And the many Americans who have voiced their outrage at the dithering of the international community should and can act as well as speak — by contributing to humanitarian organizations like Unicef, the International Rescue Committee and Doctors Without Borders.

At the United Nations World Summit meeting last September, the United States and other participating governments agreed that the international community has a responsibility to protect innocent civilians when a government is unwilling or unable to do so. In a letter organized by the Stanford chapter of Students Taking Action Now: Darfur and personally delivered to one of the president's aides last month, we, along with 16 of our colleagues, called on President Bush and Secretary Rice to lead the international community in honoring this pledge.
A failure of international will has allowed Darfur to bleed into another year of rape, slaughter and starvation. Only strong leadership and urgent, resolute action can save lives before this moment of hope is lost.

Anthony Lake, a professor at Georgetown, was a national security adviser to President Bill Clinton. Francis Fukuyama, a professor of international political economy at Johns Hopkins, is the author of "America at the Crossroads."

Thanks to the wonderful folks that care about Darfur:





Sunday, May 21, 2006

Day #8 May 21: "We hold the Power"

9:15pm White House - Round the Clock Vigil

"We - even we here - hold the power, and bear the responsibility." Abraham Lincoln (from Samantha Power, "Problem from Hell.")

The day has been spent here talking about the urgent need to scream support to our elected officials for immediately putting 20,000 UN peace keepers on the ground. Spoke with some great folks, and shared with them the need for urgency and action. Photos below.

And time was spent, reading, and rereading portions of "The Problem from Hell," about the US non-response to Genocides in the last 100 years. I offer the following quotes as a Bottom Line of Power's findings as to why WE HAVE NEVER STOPPED A GENOCIDE. It is NOT that we didn't know, couldn't afford, were opposed internationally....

THE REASONS WE DIDN'T ACT / THE REASONS WE WILL PROBABLY NOT ACT THIS TIME:

* "It is in the realm of domestic politics that the battle to stop genocide is lost. American political leaders interpret society-wide silence as an indicator of public indifference."

* "They reason that they will incur no costs if the United States remains uninvolved but will face steep risks if they engage."

* "The battle to stop genocide has thus been repeatedly lost in the realm of domestic politics... Americans outside the executive branch were largely mute when it mattered. As a result of this society-wide silence, officials at all levels of government calculated that the political costs of getting involved in stopping genocide far exceeded the costs of remaining uninvolved."

* "It takes political pressure to put genocide on the map in Washington."

* "...Individuals ... would have to make a difference, which is not the same as believing that they would [succeed]."

I pray on behalf of our Darfur family that "We - even we here..." TAKE the power, and TAKE the RESPONSIBILITY, NOW.