Thursday, July 25, 2013

Who wants to hear about Guantanamo?

Not many people, according to my stats ... whenever I write about the Gitmo hunger strike my readership goes way down. I understand that ... it's not pleasant to think or write about, nothing's really changed (that much) and there's not a hell of a lot that one person can do ... I mean, they *really* *really* don't want to let those guys out of there. And I bet I know why. They've done some really evil shit on those dudes that, if it ever saw the light of day, would totally blight any credence or moral pretensions the United States might have left.

But the fact that Gitmo is still open is eating away at the soul of this country like acid. Some people can't turn away. I have a friend from Code Pink who has been fasting out of solidarity for these prisoners for 41 days. Other protesters have been fasting even longer. No one's going to be force-feeding these guys when their lives become endangered (as I'm sure they already have). It's not that hard to slip into that kind of state, I've gone over 12 days without eating, and I can tell you after 10 days people stop feeling hungry. But I will say this: going on a fast makes it abundantly clear what kind of hell those poor detainees at Gitmo must be going through. There's not a minute that goes by when you aren't aware of every little thing you do, and why you're doing it. I think Gandhi once said that "Fasting is the most sincere form of prayer."

Scottish comedian Frankie Boyle is the latest to join the crew -- he's gone on hunger strike in support of Shaker Aamer - the last British detainee in Guantánamo Bay. I've been on long fasts more than once, I know what these guys are going through, and it's the very least I can do to keep bringing it up, even if no one wants to hear about it ...


Greg Bacon said...

What about all those California prisoners who are also refusing food?

Sounds like the GITMO method of incarceration is gaining popularity.

Jody Paulson said...

That's true, Greg ... there's an ongoing hunger strike in CA prisons that began July 8 with about 30,000 participants — the largest in California history. 630 continue to refuse meals as of yesterday. The inmates are protesting the state's use of indefinite solitary confinement to control prison gangs, among other policies. Here's a link: Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity