Friday, August 05, 2005

Reparations, hunger and exporting prisoners

I was kinda excited when I read Repaying Segregation's Debt, an editorial in today's WashPo. I live here and still didn't realize these scholarships had been granted. I think it's a great idea and if anyone needs to make peace with their past, it would be Virginia. Well, Mississippi and Alabama rank a close second.

What I also found interesting is this:

In 1959, Mr. Woodley's own newspaper led the local chorus of opposition to integration, denouncing it as a communist plot against racial purity and the American way. Now the newspaper, under the same family ownership, has backed Mr. Woodley, and the state scholarships, to the hilt. That is a measure of Virginia's progress, and a credit to it.

I guess he changed his mind. Now, if he could only convince himself and others that gay women and men need to be treated as humans, too.

The hunger in Niger has reached pandemic proportions. But we've known that right? They say the public was notified too late and this plague was predicted 9 months ago. I think most of us have just been ignoring it, hoping they would be able to take care of themselves. After all, severe hunger and malnutrition isn't new to the African continent: Darfur, Rwanda, Congo. The only difference from those countries and Niger, is the latter is not at war with itself. As said on the news last night and this morning, it's not hard to access Niger and most of the world has more money/food than they know what to do with.

I keep coming back to the line: but we didn't know, we weren't told until it was too late (and by 'we' I mean the rest of the world). The ONE Campaign has been out in force trying to raise awareness about hunger and poverty. How could they not know? How could any of us not know?
And most importantly, how could we not feel the least bit empathetic as moms watch their children die a preventable death?

Finally we are getting rid of some detainees from the Guantanomo Bay prison, er, detention facility. Afghanistan of all places is going to take some at the urging of the U.S. Go figure. Maybe they will "escape" back to their families once there.

I love how words like exclusive and enemy combatants are in scare quotes within the article.

Oh, don't miss this:

"The Guantanamo issue is clearly a liability for the Bush administration, and emptying it has become a priority," said John Sifton, a specialist on Afghanistan and detainee issues at Human Rights Watch, an international monitoring group. "It's not a victory for human rights if a whole set of people deprived of their liberty are then moved to another place and continued to be deprived of their liberty unlawfully."

Yep, there is more to this move than just returning the detainees or trying to release some pressure from Guantanamo Bay.

Someone needs to impeach this man or seduce him into receiving oral sex and then lying about it. In front of a Grand Jury trial. Hurry!