a call to your conscience:  SaveDarfur.org

                                                          REMEMBERING GENOCIDE

Now is the prospect of summer made winter by the specter of genocide. On May 1, 2007 a rally was held on Fountain
Square in Cincinnati to note that time is running out on the people of Darfur.  It is fitting to recall the darker side of our
human condition.  The purpose of recalling is not to chill our hope for the future but to ensure that we remember
enough to understand how limited we are in our altruism for others – and because we have remembered, we preserve
the glimmer of hope to be better yet.

Genocide is a reality of human existence.  We have not treated our neighbors as ourselves –  history is replete with
instances when we have treated our neighbors as lesser beings.  All we have to look towards is the not so distant 20th
century.  Indeed genocide is a modern concept that can be traced to 1933 when Raphael Lemkin, a Polish-Jewish legal
scholar presented his essay
Crimes of Barbarity during a League of Nations conference.  The massacre of Assyrians in
Iraq during August 1933 and of Armenians during World War I formed the factual basis for Lemkin’s argument for
criminalizing such actions under international law.  Little did he know at that time of the horrors of the Nazi Holocaust
which would forever stain the pages of history.  In 1944 in light of the reality of the Holocaust, the term genocide was
finally defined in Lemkins’s book
Axis Rule in Occupied Europe.

The mass murder of Armenians, Assyrians, Jews, Cambodians, Rwandans, Bosnians, Darfurians and too many other
peoples are a sad and painful reality.  It is so unpleasant, especially in the light of photographs which document
genocides which occurred in our lifetimes, that many good people often seek relief from these sickening images by
thinking. “This cannot be true!”   Thus, the beguiling siren’s call to deny the severity or even the occurrence of such
catastrophes.  Perhaps there is an even a very dark political motive to deny past genocide or to ignore on-going
genocide.  When we deny history, we set the stage to repeat it for history inevitably recycles when we fail to learn from
our past.  Paraphrasing Edmund Burke,  "
Evil triumphs when good people do nothing."

All people of any and all religious persuasion and who believe in justice must gather up our moral courage and
recognize that genocide has occurred, is occurring and can only abate when we look such evil in the face and say
never again.  This we will do in our homes, in our places of worship, in our workplaces, and in the halls of government,
wherever we are, even as we hope for a better world..

Charleston C K Wang

                                                             Copyright 2007 All Rights Reserved Charleston C. K. Wang, Esq., Publisher
Photography on this page by Charleston C. K. Wang  
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TIME IS RUNNING OUT (May 1, 2007 - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA)
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(October 13, 2007 - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA)
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