Rabbi Saperstein: Today, knowing every unresponsive day means more pain, more suffering, more death, more orphans - today this is our answer: We must not, we dare not, we will not stand idly by.
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WASHINGTON, D.C., March 16, 2012 - Participating in a protest at the Sudanese Embassy, during which actor George Clooney and Members of Congress, religious leaders and human rights activists called on President Omar al-Bashir to end his campaign of violence against the people of Sudan and South Sudan, Rabbi David Saperstein, Director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, delivered the following remarks prior to his arrest:
"Today - this very day - an infant in Southern Sudan will die of the mounting starvation. Tomorrow, a woman raped as a wapon of war; a family killed by bombs sent by Bashir's north a a village. Day by day, this count will mount to join the 2.5 million dead and 6 million displaced in the ethnic cleansing of Sudan's 30 years of civil war. And still more will die - because we are busy, because we have other priorities, because they are far away in Africa; they will die most of all because the world doesn't care enough. Think of it: On every death certificate - new ones today, and again tomorrow , and again the next day - on every death certificate, let the cause of death be accurately reported: indifference.
So know this: One day our children or grandchildren will with puzzled expressesions ask: Did you not know? Or, God forbid: Did you not care? How will our nation's Members of Congress, religious leaders, public intellectuals, and influential cultural figures answer them? Well today, knowing every unresponsive day means more pain, more suffering, more death, more orphans, today this is our answer: We must not, we dare not, we will not stand idly by."
For pictures, click here, and for Rabbi Saperstein's statement before his arrest, click here.