Law and order exist for the purpose of establishing justice and when they fail in this purpose they become the dangerously structured dams that block the flow of social progress.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
I hear them in my dreams,
Screaming for help.
They chant sometimes asking for justice.
They, those unrecognizable faces,
That died in the aftermath of a political election,
And those that survived, that have nightmares every night.
They cry for justice the dead:
That un-named boy who had just been circumcised,
Just become a man, then died;
That baby that suckled at its mother’s breast,
Taken violently and had its brains smashed in,
As the mother watched helplessly, then she was violated,
And killed with the memory of her dead child still haunting her,
Her breasts still leaking milk as she died;
For those who sought sanctuary in a church,
Thought the enemies would respect the house of God,
But caught in a killing lust the enemies they didn’t care,
Burning babies, children, youth and the old alike,
Their screams and their burning flesh polluting the air,
Their only crime belonging to another community.
I hear the cries of the living:
For that teenager innocent, untouched, her body blooming,
Gang raped and left for dead;
For that pregnant woman raped as well, broken,
Having a miscarriage after the brutal ordeal;
Another even having bottles shoved in,
To kill the innocent life inside her;
For the woman who was raped, left for died and who didn’t die,
But got HIV, and the one that got pregnant as well;
For that man that has land,
But cannot return there, because he fears death;
For that person scarred for life,
Disabled by invisible and visible scars.
For that person who lost their whole family,
And for those after these horrors, lost their sanity.
I cry for my country, for forgetting them,
For treating them as ghosts and not as people,
For not fighting for justice for them,
But treating them like refugees in their own country.
I cry because my country does not remember them,
Doesn’t honour their memories,
But goes on business as usual.
Let us not forget them,
Let’s not leave their stories untold,
Let’s fight for justice for them,
For they are us and we are they.
Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe.
(pictures from the internet)
We need to remember the victims of the tragic aftermath of the elections. We need to stop having collective amnesia. You can watch some videos of women talking about it here.
Quotes on violence
“I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.”
― Mahatma Gandhi, The Essential Gandhi
“Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.”
― Isaac Asimov, Foundation
“We often think of peace as the absence of war, that if powerful countries would reduce their weapon arsenals, we could have peace. But if we look deeply into the weapons, we see our own minds- our own prejudices, fears and ignorance. Even if we transport all the bombs to the moon, the roots of war and the roots of bombs are still there, in our hearts and minds, and sooner or later we will make new bombs. To work for peace is to uproot war from ourselves and from the hearts of men and women. To prepare for war, to give millions of men and women the opportunity to practice killing day and night in their hearts, is to plant millions of seeds of violence, anger, frustration, and fear that will be passed on for generations to come. ”
― Thich Nhat Hanh, Living Buddha, Living Christ
“Violence is a disease, a disease that corrupts all who use it regardless of the cause.”
― Chris Hedges
This I think sums it up
“Thou shalt not be a victim, thou shalt not be a perpetrator, but, above all, thou shalt not be a bystander.”
― Yehuda Bauer