Wednesday, April 07, 2004

Remember the Blood Frenzy of Rwanda: Samantha Power
In light of the anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, I recently attended a conference "Human Rights From the Bottom Up" presented by the The Comparative Law and Society Studies (CLASS) Center. Keynote speaker was anthropologist Dr. June Nash who spoke on the history of genocide and ethnocide of the Mayas in Guatemala and Mexico. Also heard from volunteers who worked with the Guatamela Accompaniment Project as well as Peace Brigades International and the International Solidarity Movement.

Another human rights lecture I attended just the other day was by Francis Bok who wrote an autobiography entitled "Escape from Slavery: The True Story of My Ten Years in Captivity and My Journey to Freedom in America." Slavery is still very much in existence today. According to the anti-slavery portal,, "Slavery and the slave trade are outlawed in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and slavery is technically illegal everywhere in the world. Yet today there are more people - 27 million, by conservative estimate - enslaved worldwide than ever before. While the moral argument against slavery has been won, the practical struggle to end slavery is by no means over."

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