Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Have You Thought About the Life of Your Clothes Today?

If not, you should be ashamed.

Why? Because apparently, the "life" of your clothes is more important than the lives of real life, human beings.

Well, at least more important than 400 Congo victims who sought refuge at a Roman Catholic church, Christmas day, in a remote part of eastern Congo, only to be "hacked to death and forced into fires" by the Lord's Resistance Army rebel group.

In the last half hour to 45 minutes (it's now 10:30 AM EST), CNN reported on the following stories:

Swishing where women get together to swap gorgeous clothes and party at the same time, designed to "encourage people to think about the life of their clothes".

A white American woman who disappeared from a cruise ship (apparently a suicide).

An essay contest to win "free" tickets to Presidential inauguration where a donation is highly encouraged (The theme of the essay is "What the Inauguration Means to You." Essays are due by 1/8/2009).

The brutal year for investors, dismal housing market, and consumer confidence.

The fighting taking place in Gaza.

What do all these stories have in common? That's right. They all involve white people.

At the same exact time, the BBC was reporting (yes, I was listening to both) on the aforementioned Christmas Massacre in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Yesterday, I compared Obama to Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda, essentially praising him for what he's accomplished in Rwanda, however I neglected the dark side of that leadership - except to mention the spillover of Rwandan genocide into Congo - and that is the exploitation of Congo, where over 5.4 million Congolese deaths can be traced to Kagame's regime.

The death toll and carnage is far greater in Congo, than Darfur, yet numerous celebrities, such as George Clooney, Brad Pitt, and Don Cheadle have joined in to raise money and focus media attention on the terrible tragedy of Darfur, which is wonderful, but what about the Congolese? Surely, there are other celebrities out there...

And, why is CNN reporting on what amounts to a woman's free-for-all over large sacks of designer frocks, instead of reporting real news? Could it be an issue of complicity involving Western companies, who profit immensely from genocide who sponsor media conglomerates?

I mean, what's more important? The life of 65-million dark-skinned people or the massive mineral wealth, that these 65-million people live amidst? If you chose "massive mineral wealth", you win free tickets to witness the giant plunder of, paradoxically, the richest country on earth.

This support of militias takes the form of arms transfers, financial assistance, military advice and training and safe harbor for those who flee the Congolese national government. In fact, several United Nations reports have accused Rwanda and Uganda of siphoning off Congo's mineral wealth with the complicity of Western companies
This is genocide.
  • 1,250 Congolese citizens die every day. That’s 38,000 each month
  • Over ¾ of the population is now malnourished
  • No access to healthcare except what the Catholic Church provides.
  • Rebels routinely hack off limbs and the lips of civilians
  • Tens of thousands of children have been abducted to be fighters and sex slaves, and another 26,000 people have fled into the forests and a further 6,000 have sought sanctuary around churches.
  • Brutal, mass rapes effect victims’ from 4-years old to 80, and subsequently disowned by their own families after being raped.

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