Editorial: Genocide still present in Darfur, student activism to generate support

By Mallory Terrence
October 2, 2008

Never again, the world collectively agreed after 10 million were killed during the Nazi persecution. Never again would the world sit back and let an innocent ethnic group die. Never again would the world allow genocide.

The promise of “never again” has done nothing and has allowed millions to lose theirs lives to genocide. The United Nations acted too late and with too little force in Bosnia, Kosovo, Cambodia, Rwanda and currently Sudan.

Sudan is home to Darfur, a region that has been undergoing genocide since February 2003. Darfur is a region where innocent men, women and children are being murdered, raped and displaced from their homes just because of who they are.

This genocide has been able to occur and take over 400,000 Darfuri lives. Funding for the perpetrators comes directly from the Sudanese government.

The Sudanese government has sent in a rebel group by the name of the Janjaweed to kill and torture the people of Darfur.

In 2004, the United States government called the violent acts in Darfur genocide, but the killing still continues. The United Nations has done little to intervene and has not taken action to stop these atrocities.

The violence has been permitted by the international community and will continue to do so if we do not stand up and demand a change.

It has been activist groups and student organizations that are rising the most concern for Darfur. It was not the United Nations that has brought Darfur to the minds of Americans. It has been college students wanting to put an end to it and prevent future genocides.

STAND is a completely student-run organization that is committed to ending genocide. STAND envisions a world in which the international community protects civilians from genocidal violence.

It is organizations like STAND that have brought the issue to the forefront when it was not recognized by even large governments.

There are over 900 college national and international chapters of STAND. Cabrini College does not have a chapter.

Do you believe that the current genocide in Darfur needs to end and elected officials need to be held accountable for their decisions towards genocide?

Change does not need to come from George Clooney or other famous activists. It can happen with the average college student demanding that international action is needed to help save the people of Darfur.

Letters to federal, state and even local government officials in support of ending the genocide is one way students can have the ability to make a difference.

Last month, the state of California signed legislation that will ban genocide-linked companies from receiving taxpayer-funded contracts in California.

Darfur activism groups in California sent letters in support of the legislation, which increased pressure on lawmakers and ended in a huge success for the effort to end the genocide in Darfur.

American college students have the ability to say, “not on our watch!”

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Mallory Terrence

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