“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Archive for February 9th, 2010

Racism in Italy.

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I was just pointed towards this post, well worth a read, Roma is not just a city in Italy, it is an ethnicity:

“As for the persecution of the Roma people, the situation of Italy is emblematic: out of about 6,500 Romanian Roma present on Italian soil, over 3,000 of them are detained in prison. It is an astonishing figure and points to deep-rooted and ruthless discrimination. Over recent years EveryOne Group has prevented the unjust imprisonment of dozens of Roma citizens by simply contacting the lawyers and magistrates and supplying elements for their defence, something the Roma (used to a different kind of justice) fail to supply.”

The Everyone group is here.

Written by modernityblog

09/02/2010 at 21:31

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Keeping Up With Gita Sahgal And Amnesty International.

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When an event like this occurs it is often difficult to keep track of whose covering it and what are they saying.

Gita Sahgal has been incredibly brave, putting her own job on the line, how many people, in reality, would do that? Too few. Amnesty International’s despicable treatment of her and the wider implications need highlighting.

Thankfully there is a web site which is keeping track of these events, the media coverage and comments.

Please do visit Human Rights For All.

Update 1: The Women Against Fundamentalism site is here.

Update 2: Variant magazine’s interview with Gita Sahgal in 2002 can be found here.

Update 3: Rahila Gupta has a good piece in the Guardian:

“Within hours of the article appearing she was suspended from her job by Amnesty for, as Gita says in her statement, “trying to do my job and staying faithful to Amnesty’s mission to protect and defend human rights universally and impartially”. And for some hours yesterday, negative posts on Amnesty’s website were being filtered out.

We welcome whistleblowers when they expose wrongdoing in government or the corporate sector. This is not, technically, a case of whistleblowing because none of these activities were hidden – it was a failure to join the dots on the part of Amnesty about which a senior member of staff went public on principle.

Why should the third sector be immune from internal critics? It is a significant player in Britain: more people work in this sector than in banking, it influences the direction of government policy and public opinion, and consequently it should be held accountable like any other organisation. These debates need to be had in public rather than behind closed doors. Amnesty’s attempt to shut down the debate by using the same tactics as their opponents is shameful.”

Update 4: I forget if I gave this out before, but a reminder doesn’t hurt, the Facebook group Amnesty International You Bloody Hypocrites Reinstate Gita Sahgal has, of 3 minutes ago, some 716 members.

Update 5: BBC World Service Radio : Newshour speaks to Gita Sahgal.

Update 6: Flesh is Grass has a good post with details of Ms. Sahgal on Radio 4.

Update 7: The Facebook group (see update 4) now has 823 members.

Written by modernityblog

09/02/2010 at 13:57