Friday, April 28, 2006


can oprah end genocide?

i sure hope so. together, with george clooney's help, their secret super strengths combine to make conservatives the world over cower in fear and dread...

where else but an article about oprah's hopefully benevolent influence in the world could you find the unlikely pairing of "genocide" and "sex appeal" together in the same sentence. via jane wells in huffpo:

George Clooney and his father, journalist Nick Clooney, have just returned from a trip to Chad and Sudan, where they met with refugees from the on-going genocide in the Darfur.

Why did they go? George Clooney had heard Colin Powell call this genocide and he had read Nicholas Kristof and Samantha Power on the subject.

There was more: "I'd had a fairly good year," Clooney explained to Oprah on yesterday's show. "I thought I should cash in some of that capital on bringing attention to some of the things that concerned me." He showed exclusive video footage of his trip, including children chanting "Oprah! Hi Oprah!"

Thank God for their efforts! Finally, this genocide has enough sex appeal for mainstream TV. Oprah and 10 million viewers! There isn't time for cynicism here. Genocide trumps just about everything as a crime against humanity. Oprah asked Clooney point blank:

"OK so a genocide is taking place, now 10 million people know about this. What can they do?"

"They could go online to or they could call the White House, that's 800 224 2084 " he replied.

Good for George Clooney. He spoke movingly about what he had witnessed. He was especially poignant about the helplessness of the victims he had met, stranded, homeless, hungry and abandoned. His interest and intentions are admirable. Both he and Oprah stressed the point that we could all get out of our chairs and do something.

The belief that one person can make a difference is what has sustained me, and all the people I have worked with over the last 18 months. In this time I have traveled to Africa four times, to bear witness to genocide. I have written articles and posted numerous blogs. I have raised money for survivors and tried to raise awareness about this crisis. I am currently producing a documentary about this genocide. Everyone I have met and worked with in all these efforts believes one can person can make a difference. Many of those people who are not in Africa right now will be at The Rally to Stop Genocide in Washington, DC, this Sunday, April 30.

Today I just wanted to say "Thank You" to George Clooney and Oprah. One person can make a difference, and if it happens to be one of you two, well that can make a hell of a difference. Perhaps we could even help reach a critical tipping point. Let's hope it's George Bush and Kofi Annan who decide to make a difference next. Fingers crossed!
the cynic in me wants to shout out, while the undying optimistic liberal wants to commend this belated civic engagement, and urge her 10 million viewers to join with the hopefully couple hundred thousand folks rallying with me in dc this weekend, to urge something to be done. the specifics of the "something" though, remain an open question.

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