I was a little disappointed when the Center for Diversity and Unity changed the film screening from Blood Diamond to the Genocide in Darfur: Darfur Eyewitness film. The film was made by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and was actually a very touching and powerful story. The film featured two men, U.S. Marine Brian Steidle and Jerry Fowler, the director of the Committee on Conscience, who witnessed the effects and bloodshed in Darfur. Fowler told of his time in Chad helping the refugees and he spoke about a woman who had two gunshot wounds in her leg. She told him that she had received the gunshot wounds when she tried to draw water from the village well that the soldiers were guarding. It shocked me that they not only took away the peoples home, destroyed their belongings and families, and now they won’t even let the village people survive with their basic necessities.
To prepare for the screening and the discussion I was supposed to lead following the screening, I looked at many articles talking about Genocide in general I was unaware that Genocide had a clearly defined definition. I always just understood it as a mass killing. But in fact, the real definition of Genocide is much more powerful and clear. It states that:
“Genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or part, a national, ethnical, racial, or religious group, such as
a) killing members of the group;
b) causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
c) deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or part;
d) imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; forcibly transferring children of the group to another group. “
– United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime Genocide, adopted on December 9, 1948
Fowler also mentioned ways we can help stop the genocide in Darfur. We need tell the stories of what’s happening out there, spread awareness and just get people to start caring about genocide. Just like with the KONY campaign we need to make people aware that genocide is happening NOW, that it didn’t stop with the Holocaust. I was disappointed the attendance at the screening was very small, I feel if people took a little time out of their day to share the knowledge of genocide the world might be just a little better.
Check out the Signpost coverage of the event in the Center for Diversity and Unity!!!: http://www.wsusignpost.com/2012/04/07/holocaust/