Thursday, April 27, 2006

Rally against genocide... because numbers do matter

Major Effort To Stir Action On Darfur Lowers Sights
By JENNIFER SIEGEL
April 21, 2006

After months of mobilizing for what has been described as a major effort to stop an unfolding genocide, planners of next week's national action for Darfur are now speaking in measured terms of a radically more modest effort.

Leaders of the main effort, scheduled for April 30 in Washington, were reluctant to offer projections of turnout. But several people closely involved in the campaign offered an estimate of 20,000, and interviews with organizers in several cities reinforced that prediction.

One prominent activist said he had been led to believe that the rally was aiming to draw hundreds of thousands, in order to shake the national conscience.

No less disappointing, the mobilization — seen by organizers as an outreach effort building on the Jewish experience of genocide but embracing broader circles — does not appear to have drawn comparable attention from non-Jewish partners.

"If the numbers are so low, I think it will not be a success," said Rabbi Ammiel Hirsch of Manhattan's historic Stephen Wise Free Synagogue. If the crowd is "disproportionately Jewish, that's only to the credit of the Jewish community. But if it's disproportionately Jewish, it won't be a success."

Read the rest of The Forward article here.

10 Comments:

Blogger G-D SQUAD said...

Yeah, according to this post, Jews are undoubtedly leading the efforts against genocide in Darfur across the board.

Thu Apr 27, 11:39:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Rakdannit427 said...

Shalom,

Thanks to everyone who made the effort to come to the rally yesterday. There were around 5,000 people, according to organizers. It seemed like there were less when we arrived, but we also arrived at around 2:30PM and the protest was all day, beginning at 10:45AM. This was a great way to affirm our support for universal human rights. Yes, that's right, human rights actually exist, but it's up to us to protect, preserve, and promote them. Despite the dearth of non-Jewish orgs (though some participated), we made a powerful stand. Genocide no more!

I heard through the grapevine that more than one person thought the protest was pointless - some think that all rallies/protests are intrisically flawed and a wasted of energy exertion. Some thought that there wasn't enough energy or momentum. Why did you not add it, then? Let me challenge you: What about prayer? Hardly ever is the desirable result achieved immediately. Why pray then? Like the rally/protest on Sunday, praying can seem like a waste of energy exerted. But you must know that someone or Someone is listening.

Read here http://www.jta.org/page_view_story.asp?intarticleid=16559&intcategoryid=3

Tue May 02, 12:57:00 AM 2006  
Blogger G-D SQUAD said...

Sorry, I read through more than half the article and I didn't see where the rally actually made any kind of difference. Did I miss it?

With prayer, I'm asking G-d for something.

When I walked around in a circle this past Sunday and chanted some phrases and then my friends got some free Doritos and then we heard some speakers, who were they asking for help? They were asking us to ask politicians for help.

It all just felt so contrived to me. I'd be willing to write letters to politicians and send money, but I really want to know what difference that rally made?

Tue May 02, 01:35:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Rakdannit427 said...

Presence.

Because numbers do matter.

But we didn't really have enough. Maybe more people thought like that, that it was useless.

Yesterday, May Day, 1.1 million people marched across the country. You think Congress will actually criminalize the existence of 11 million "illegal aliens" in this country? I think not.

Tue May 02, 07:29:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

B''H
Will you two stop bickering. I'm the one who has to do a freakin article on this stuff.

Zev

ps: g-d squad had a good pt. Don't forget to also write to your congress person and donate to humanitarian orgs that are working in the region (great idea-I think I'm gonna use this bit to end my article)

Thu May 04, 07:36:00 PM 2006  
Blogger G-D SQUAD said...

Lil Ze'ev (do you get the reference? a movie we saw recently, hint hint):

I'm glad you're getting more acquainted with the blogosphere. But to be able to understand people's "tone of voice" through the text is a skill.

In this case, we were not bickering. We were having a calm discussion. I really wanted to know what difference our presence at that rally made, I wasn't angrily accusing that it made no difference; quite the contrary -- I want to believe it made a difference, but I don't feel like it did.

Also, btw, a comment left on a week-old post usually will never get read, except by me.

Thu May 04, 09:56:00 PM 2006  
Blogger JewSlug said...

And probably me...

Fri May 05, 12:25:00 AM 2006  
Blogger G-D SQUAD said...

lol

Fri May 05, 12:36:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Rakdannit427 said...

haha i picked up the reference. but what a miserable character to be named after. who wants to help save brazil?

did you guys return the dvd, btw, because it was due on thurs.

Fri May 05, 04:41:00 AM 2006  
Blogger G-D SQUAD said...

We watched it at Ari's, so presumably he took it back.

Also, my bad about the Amos Oz book... I forgot that that was the title. I read some of it, but I'm concentrating on the Morris book for now.

Shabbat shalom...

Fri May 05, 04:19:00 PM 2006  

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