|One meaning of |
Khepr is change
When i think about human rights, i feel rage. Rage for the millions of women, men and children who have been and continue to be harmed by a race/class/gender/culture/ethnicity that hides behind policies, practices and illusions of democracy. A group that creates opportunities for members of its own group, while denying opportunities for others. A group that values the lives of its own children, while devaluing the lives of all others. A group that maintains and benefits from an economic system that values life according to its profitability. A group that includes whites and people of all races/ethnicities who on the basis of race, culture and ethnicity cause harm to others, directly and indirectly. A group that includes men who use their gender as a basis for causing harm, instilling fear and asserting power. A group that includes the ruling class that exploits others for its economic benefit.
When i think about human rights, i see hypocracy. I think about the spinelessness of the United Nations. An institution that on paper looks great but in practice contributes little to nothing to protect people and the planet. I think about the hypocracy of such a nation as the United States to give the impression that it values human rights when in practice - domestically and abroad - it has been behind and/or in support of horrific acts of brutality. I think about the ways that corporations are able to commit heinous acts against families, children and the environments they rely upon for sustenance - systematically denying the most fundamental human rights - but remain protected by state and national governments and international treaties.
When i think about human rights, i feel inspired. Inspired knowing that what is isn't what always has been, which means that the future can and will be much different. Inspired by the individual and collective struggles against seemingly insurmountable odds. Inspired by the strength and courage of those who have the audacity to push back, fight back and win when survival under oppression appears easier and more accessible...more acceptable. Inspired by the workers in Zimbabwe over 10 years ago when they had the unmitigated gall to take back land of theirs that had been stolen; one of the few examples in modern history of Black people who organized and carried out their own movement for justice, unfunded by - and therefore directed by - white philanthropists. Inspired by those who speak when they are told to be quiet. Who stand when told to sit. Who live their truth when lying about self and fitting in are more culturally acceptable. Who yell, scream, hit, bite, punch, laugh...yes laugh, when everything around seeks to put them in a box. Inspired by those who create families without being bound or limited by blood. Who have the audacity to love themselves more than the oppressor and to use that love as a basis for fighting that oppression...first internally then externally with others, in communities, in nations.
When i think of human rights, i feel sad. I feel angry. I feel lied to.
When i think of human rights, i feel inspired. I feel love. I feel determined to do my part.