“Every murder or other injury, no matter for what cause, committed or inflicted on another is crime against humanity.”
–Gandhi (Harijan, July 20, 1935)
Here’s a story, short and sweet about nonviolence in action. But first, let’s review the principle of non-embarrassment. It’s when the opposition is not able to fully listen to you and so you wait until they can. When should we respect this and when should we not? It’s a matter of discernment. Here’s what I mean:
Former or what they call “laicized” Father Roy Bourgeois (former because he was dissociated with the Church for his work primarily in ordinating women priests) is known for his work in founding the School of the Americas Watch, also known as SOA Watch. The School of the Americas (who changed their name to Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation) is a military training center at Fort Benning, Georgia primarily for soldiers from Latin America. This center is infamous for training people who later become responsible for human rights abuses, including torture, murder and rape, all in direct violation of the Geneva Convention, all trained up by the American military. Since 1989, when SOA/WHISEC grads were responsible for the murder of six Jesuit priests and a housekeeper and her daugher, an annual protest has been held at the base on the anniversary of that event. Today, more than 10,000 people attend in an effort to draw attention to what is really being taught to people who pass through that training, and to the lives that those people go on to destroy.
After 9/11 the commanding officer at Fort Benning asked Father Bourgeois to call off the protest, saying that it would be the right thing to do given the act of terrorism that had just taken place. A request to “show some respect,” if you will. Bourgeois listened to the commander and said that he would have to talk to his teammates. He called him back a bit later and said that no, they agreed with the President that these “schools of terrorism had to be shut down,” and so that was what they were trying to do. The protest would go on.
Experiment in Nonviolence:
Learn more about WHISEC and the SOA Watch today and share what you find with someone.