Amnesty- Write Rights… Teenage girl awakens spark of justice

Dec 10 is International Human Rights Day!
We should all be aware and more proactive about helping others, acting as agents fighting injustice home and abroad. But we don’t. We sleep.

20131204-231538.jpgWe get busy. We get complacent and egocentric. We get myopic about our world view and too often tune out or deselect any action because of guilt, laziness or media fatigue… Etc. students at KSS reawakened me! Woke me up from my sleep about Amnesty International’s programs and I’m a media focused adult. It took one of our intelligent, concerned activist youth to focus my lens again. It took a girl to wake me up.

It doesn’t need to be Ghandi. It can be you and me. Write for Rights is just on example. The simple act of physical letter writing- an action, however quaint in our smart phone age, can collectively represent a step toward justice. A handwritten note could touch another soul locked behind bars, isolated unfairly from his Christmas traditions. The ‘power of the pen’ , the quill, once produced a US Constitution, Magna Carta, or the abolition of slavery in the USA. Sadly, even with these democratic signposts, black market human trafficking and unlawful confinement of citizens by nation states, who should act better than trade thugs, continue to flourish. In our blessed free part of the world, we can forget that justice needs to be defended. My uncle gave his life fighting against political bullies in Italy during WWII. He died halfway around the world in a foreign country for the liberty of strangers! Surely I can write a letter for a few guys behind bars? We can all light a flame of hope with that simple gesture. It’s just takes us to be more mindful and less entitled.

Next time one hears stories of those ‘no good lazy, spoiled teenagers’ please be reminded- not in my neck of the woods! In my neighbourhood many many teens are incredibly sensitive, educated, and doing something to better the planet. It’s my generation who messed it up! So student activism is alive and well, even if in a renewal phase. So fellas, brothers in arms, young and old, join our sister, who woke me up and take action. Man up! And write a letter. Please.:-) peace. -Al Smith, Teacher-librarian

Amnesty International invites you to join us on International Human Rights Day for the world’s largest letter-writing event
Every year on December 10th, activists in more than 80 countries gather on their own or in large and small events to press governments to respond to a human rights concern on selected high-priority cases. We also write letters of hope and solidarity directly to prisoners or people experiencing human rights violations.(amnesty.ca)

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Pledge to write>>> http://goo.gl/k0wj0d

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