Tuesday, 31 October 2006

The Important Stuff

Sometimes I find it difficult getting too worked up about some Human Rights Issues, even ones affecting me personally. They seem so trivial in the Grand Scheme of Things, yet I have a duty to clean up my own back-yard, so to speak.

Here's why I feel this way. I subscribe to iAbolish, the US-based anti-slavery group. This scourge is still with us in out-of-the-way places, and the wrongness of chattel slavery offends me deeply.
This week, iAbolish brings you an excerpt from chapter 2 of Enslaved: Abuk Bak's story.

When her village in Southern Sudan was raided by an Arab militia in 1987, Abuk Bak; only 12 years old at the time; was kidnapped and subsequently enslaved for ten years. During that time, her master, Ahmed Adam, never once used her name; she was always "abeeda." It was only after she escaped that she learned what it meant: her name for a decade was simply "black slave."

From Chapter 2: Beyond Abeeda

"As we struggled, Ahmed Adam grabbed the knife that he carried in his sleeve and stabbed me in my right thigh. The pain was so strong that he could not stop my screams, and he ran back into the house, afraid that his wife would hear...

"I knew right away that I would not stay to see another morning there, but my leg was bleeding badly. I ripped a piece of cloth from my skirt and tied it around my thigh to try to stop the bleeding, and thought about how to escape. I lay awake all night, knowing that if I ran away I could be found and severely beaten or killed, but I had to take a chance."

You can read about the rest of Abuk's escape in Enslaved: True Stories of Modern Day Slavery
Compared with that, it's a little difficult getting too worked up about trivialities like being denied a passport, or any of the myriad humiliations I've had to endure in my journey so far.

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