"[Y]ou don't necessarily have to solve a problem. You just have to take the steps that are available to you. . . . I focus on the fact that I don't have to solve it. I just have to do what I can. "I don't have to solve the problem.
--Jerry Fowler, Executive Director of the Save Darfur Coalition, during an interview on the Voices on Genocide Prevention Podcast.
I just have to do what I can.
One of the reasons I think the issue of genocide in Darfur, and in other places, hasn't reached the mainstream consciousness, is that it is hard to find actions that make concerned citizens feel like they are having an impact. The genocide prevention movement hasn't found its equivalent of carbon offsets, hybrid cars and CFL light bulbs.
Perhaps they would gain a more mainstream constituency by acknowledging the overwhelming nature of the problem, and emphasizing in their messaging that you just have to do what you can.
April 6-13, 2008 human rights groups like Genocide Intervention Network, STAND, Amnesty International, and Save Darfur are using the Global Week for Darfur to raise awareness about the continuing violence and need for action. The week provides a number of ways for you to do what you can.
April 6 Host a fundraiser house party for your favorite human rights organization with a viewing of Hotel Rwanda in memory of the Rwandan genocide's anniversary.
April 8 Watch the HBO special, The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo.
April 9 Attend a protest along the Olympic Torch relay route in San Francisco. Tell China to, "Extinguish the Flames of Genocide in Darfur." Check out Dave Eggers' recent Op -Ed in the New York Times, "Dropping the Torch" about the event.
April 10 Call President Bush at 1-800-GENOCIDE and ask the White House to keep its promise by implementing the Sudan Accountability and Divestment Act (SADA).
April 13 Join STAND, Amnesty International, GI-Net, and Save Darfur on the National Mall in Washington, DC for a rally at the White House on the Global Day for Darfur.
After the Global Week for Dafur has passed, you can continue to follow anti-genocide news, policy and campaigns on the ENOUGH Project's Report feed, and the STAND, Genocide Intervention Network, and Save Darfur blogs.
By writing this blog post, I am doing what I can. What can you do?