The exaltation of resistance leaders, around the globe, upon glossy white pedestals has fed into three problems with far reaching consequences that are relevant to how we judge resistance now. These issues shut down opportunities by shutting out the realities, the truth about resistance. This is not only problematic for those involved, but also for our society. If people are shut down and unrecognized it only continues to silence marginalized groups. It needs to stop.
Many people do not understand the difference between listening to someone's perspective and obeying. When people cease to feel remotely heard they usually cry out "listen" and those who are already ignoring them think it means "obey me, submit, everything I say is right." That is not what listen means. In fact, I just looked it up to … Continue reading Listen, Always Listen: Female Circumcision
The setting of this story is in the beautiful Kenyan highlands of the 1950s, where British colonists had fallen in love with a beating sun, fertile earth, and the majestic Mount Kenya at the heart of it all in the 1920s. The highlands were not just beautiful they also lacked a plethora of obstacles to European settlement … Continue reading The Creation of the African Boogeyman
When atrocities occur our gut reaction is to wonder why and how. I have broadly answered the why of the Rwandan genocide. On the International Day of Reflection for the Rwandan genocide I want to go deeper. How can average people commit violence on such a large scale? How could the Hutu Power movement kill, … Continue reading We Would Not Be Capable
I fell for it. I will be the first to admit I fell for Hotel Rwanda hook line and sinker. I watched it in high school and ate it up. I was right there with the rest of the world in my respect and reverence for the bravery portrayed particularly by "Rwanda's Schindler," Paul Rusesabagina. … Continue reading Accepted “Fact” versus Real Heroes
Every year at CU Boulder I saw students and self entitled “explorers” “wander” to Rwanda to see the victims of the horrendous genocide. They played the humble witness sanctimoniously taking pictures with groups of black Rwandan kids. They shed the ceremonious tear and felt the horror and grief that is "the real Africa." In the … Continue reading Self Confirming Assumptions
The issue of violence is inescapable. Every continent has experienced eruptions of violence at some point throughout human history. Violence is something inside of us all and it creates massive changes rather rapidly making it tempting to focus solely on violence. I can’t even tell you how many classes were offered at my University in … Continue reading The Savage Myth