7.12.2005

Welcome to the Cruel World - A Prayer for the Dying

welcome to the cruel world hope you find your way welcome to the cruel world hope you find your way it's a cruel world try to enjoy your stay Yes it is a cruel world when you're tryin' to get by it's a cruel world when you've seen the look in their eye makes life hard living but I'm so scared to die Welcome to the cruel world welcome welcome Don't know how we've lasted here so long there must be more good than bad or we'd already be gone and if you get up to Heaven before I do I'm gonna tell ya It's gonna be cruel there too You can't hide from this cruel world cause there is no place to run you can't hide from the cruel world there just is no place to run it's been cruel from the beginning it will be cruel when we're done So when I'm gone I will gladly say goodbye when I am gone I will gladly say goodbye and if you want to feel me put your hands up to the sky Welcome to the cruel world welcome welcome hope you find your way try to enjoy your stay ben harper Crossposted from the Coalition for Darfur A rather negative tone I am afraid and don't be afraid to read it. As Mark Leon Goldberg of the American Prospect reported back in April, the Bush administration was leaning heavily on congressional leaders and managed to stall, and probably killed, the Darfur Accountability Act. As Goldberg explained, the bill

[E]stablishes targeted U.S. sanctions against the Sudanese regime, accelerates assistance to expand the size and mandate of the African Union mission in Darfur, expands the United Nations Mission in Sudan to include the protection of civilians in Darfur, establishes a no-fly zone over Darfur, and calls for a presidential envoy to Sudan.
Because of this pressue, the bill appears to be trapped in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Human Rights and International Relations, presumably never to be seen again. And here is the rest of it. So what is Congress going to do now that sanctions, a no-fly zone and civilian protection are off the table? Apparently it has been reduced to "[encouraging] the people of the United States [to pray] for an end to the genocide and crimes against humanity and for lasting peace in Darfur, Sudan." That's right, the US Congress has been reduced to calling on the American people to pray that somehow this genocide ends. On July 1st, the US Senate quietly passed S.RES.186
A resolution affirming the importance of a national weekend of prayer for the victims of genocide and crimes against humanity in Darfur, Sudan, and expressing the sense of the Senate that July 15 through July 17, 2005, should be designated as a national weekend of prayer and reflection for the people of Darfur.
The House passed a companion resolution (H.RES.333) just yesterday. The key portion of the resolution reads as follows
Resolved, That the House of Representatives-- (1) supports the goals and ideals of a National Weekend of Prayer and Reflection for Darfur, Sudan; (2) encourages the people of the United States to observe that weekend by praying for an end to the genocide and crimes against humanity and for lasting peace in Darfur, Sudan; and (3) urges all churches, synagogues, mosques, and religious institutions in the United States to consider the issue of Darfur in their activities and to observe the National Weekend of Prayer and Reflection with appropriate activities and services.
This resolution appears to be the work of the Save Darfur Coalition, a vital organization that has done a great deal to raise awareness of the genocide - but what does it say about the level of US commitment to address this situation when Congress is unwilling to do anything beyond simply asking the American people to pray for the dying people of Darfur? If members of Congress are truly concerned about the deaths of nearly 400,000 Darfuris, or the fates of an estimated 3 million more, they are certainly capable of doing more than quietly declaring a "National Weekend of Prayer and Reflection." Save Darfur deserves credit for getting Congress to even do this much, but this resolution cannot absolve Congress of its pathetic failure to adequately address the situation in Darfur. If anything, it only serves to highlight the government's utter lack of concern.

7 Comments:

Blogger Coyote Mike said...

You forget the "Bush Rules of War"

1. Thou shalt go to war when a reelection is on the line.

2. Thou shalt not "save" a country that doesn't have oil.

3. Thou shalt ignore Africa.

5. Thou shalt forget how to count.

7/12/2005 09:56:00 PM  
Anonymous weirsdo said...

Thanks for the update. And what about the media? What's their excuse?

7/13/2005 12:09:00 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

surfed in through blogexplosion. Very nice blog!

7/13/2005 05:34:00 AM  
Blogger Nony Mitchell said...

I am a big believer in the power of prayer...but in this case something more really should be done. Unfortunately I must agree with Coyote Mike...it just don't fit into Bush's rules.

7/13/2005 10:01:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

I agree with Spiritdancer. This is what pisses me off about his congress. They'd rather tell me how to pray than serve the duties of government. If you want to be a Bishop, go to seminary.

7/13/2005 03:47:00 PM  
Anonymous Joe G said...

I dig Ben Harper.
Your comments are at the bottom!!!

I am not very political nor am I much of an activist at heart but I am starting to pay a little more attention to things in Africa.
It is a tragedy and not just due to our government.

7/13/2005 07:50:00 PM  
Blogger Ruben said...

I really enjoy the music of Ben Harper. In regard to Darfur, I just don't quite understand how their government can be so damn cruel. Life is precious and time ticks away and everyone should have a decent chance at life. The killing needs to stop. Minds need to be opened.

7/14/2005 01:46:00 PM  

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