Things I wish I did not know. But I do. So, now what?

I am heartsick.

Did not sleep last night.

Not sure how I’ll sleep tonight, though exhausted.

Have no idea what happened in classes or at work today. Just a blur. This whole day is blur. The only thing I remember is last night…

Last night, I attended a lecture. I attend many lectures weekly at my own and other nearby universities. This particular lecture left me in tatters & tears. I’m ashamed to say there’s a part of me that wishes I had not gone. Because then, I wouldn’t know the things I know now, would not have seen the images I saw, and wouldn’t have heard the sounds that haunted me all night.

It was an awful awakening. I felt like a crash test dummy. Over and over…WHAM! WHAM! WHAM!!

It was so awful even the men were surreptitiously wiping away tears.

The women cried openly.

I tried not to. I tried to be like the pragmatic presenters – 2 doctors who’ve just returned from a trip to Hell – stoically sharing photos, video, and sound recordings of their ongoing experiences in that fiery pit on the other side of the world.

Those images…those sounds -things we’ve never seen or heard here in America because our news dare not show it.

I wanted to be like those 2 doctors – controlled emotion in the face of horror. I wanted to watch and listen objectively. I wanted to asses things from a neutral viewpoint, a viewpoint that says, ‘There’s more than one side to any story.’

Fat chance.

What I saw and heard last night twisted my heart, my view of things. Worse, it robbed me of the contentedness I walked in there with. This lecture stole that from me. And now I’m adrift, riding waves of emotion that I don’t want to feel.

I don’t want to feel this. I don’t want to. I just don’t.

The truth is, I knew. I had a idea. Because reports in virtually every foreign news outlet in the world say the exact opposite of what our American news reports say regarding this hellish issue. We stand alone in our politically biased views on this issue.

So, I knew what we’re being told isn’t the whole story. Most of it is so far from the truth that you wonder how our news anchors can look the camera in the eye as they report the lies we swallow.

Even so, last night I learned that knowing a piece of hellish truth is nothing at all like knowing the whole hellish truth. Seeing it. Hearing it. And worse, knowing you are complicit in it.

I am complicit in the slow genocide of a nation.

A slow torture of men, women, and God help me, children. Babies…toddlers…adolescents. Shot for target practice. Shot to alleviate boredom. Shot for betting, the prize being chocolates; the smaller the child killed, the more chocolates won.

The largest prize – cheers, admiration, and a secretly mass-produced t-shirt with an image of your target on it – goes to soldiers who shoot pregnant women in their bellies. Because in shooting children, the soldiers have righteously saved their own nation from a future generation of “terrorists.”

These 2 doctors from last night’s lecture travel covertly in and out of Hell, treating, trying to save, but mostly wrapping what’s left of the bodies of children for burial.

We saw those little bodies. What was left of them.

Genocide is being systematically carried out by an ally of my government. My government, while occasionally shaking a tolerant finger at our ally, provides the money, the weapons, and wink-and-a-nod support for this slow, secret, genocide.

These 2 doctors, along with dozens of other foreign doctors who slip into the tortured country to provide aid, have been witnesses to this genocide for nearly a decade.

I know things now about this slow slaughter of a people. I saw them last night, heard them, felt their slow dying. I cried silently. Nearly vomited. Left the room a couple of times with others who couldn’t watch, couldn’t listen anymore.

I know things now.

If I stay silent, I am therefore complicit.

If I chose only to cluck my tongue and shake my head sadly, I am complicit. If I chose to turn away from such unpleasantness, I am complicit. If I shy away from controversial discussions about this slaughter, I am complicit.

If I do any of these things which allow me to turn away and remain silent, I am complicit. I am helping my government, with my tax dollars and my silence, to carry out a slow, secret, systematic genocide on a people.

I know now.

What do I do with that?

What do I do?


Random Topic Tuesday


22 thoughts on “Things I wish I did not know. But I do. So, now what?

  1. Yours and others are voices which cannot be quieted – unless they choose to be silent. And if only one person who hears cares enough to take up the call, then you have made a difference. And in that one person’s transformation, you have changed the world.

  2. Pingback: Society 101: Human Gorilla Games | Sylver Blaque

  3. There is too much injustice in the world to fight it all at once. I agree with Carl in that we should do what we can, where and when we can. I admire you for posting about topics that many would prefer not to discuss or even know about.

    • Thank you for these kind words, Kat. Yes, there’s enough injustice in the world to fill another planet. But I believe that if even one person does even one thing toward helping rectify this, it will make a difference. And can you imagine if everyone did just one thing – wow, the power behind that is staggering!

  4. this is a hard one, isn’t it ~ you have such a beautiful heart, you are a beautiful soul who aches.
    Carl and Eleni have a place to start, to rest and then see if there is something more you want to do … if that is what is calling. We don’t turn away by praying ~ maybe it seems too simple, but it is a practice that for me helps, nourishes and guides me to what I am to do next, if anything other than pray.

    • Patricia, your words always touch my heart. I always think of you as the one with the beautiful heart and peaceful soul. 🙂

      I agree – there is nothing simple about prayer. It is, I believe, the most powerful force in existence. It’s the gateway and, as you said, the guide to right action.

      Here’s something I read yesterday that expresses how I feel about this. I don’t know this site, but came across this post while searching for organizations related to this genocide crisis. And, since I don’t believe in coincidences, I think I was meant to read this:
      Prayer Without Action is Powerless:

      Thank you for this supportive comment, Patricia. Everyone who’s commented here has been so honest & supportive that it gives me strength, you know? I am so appreciative to you all!

      • There are so many frightening, choatic, brutal things happening in the world ~ hard to get away from knowing that, seeing that and feeling the distress, sadness, pain, helplessness. Because I can’t take action as to all of the problems, wars, hunger, etc., I go to prayer and hold deeply in my heart, my soul, my thoughts love and see a positive, peaceful reasolution. For what I can do, signing petitions, demonstrating, giving money, etc., I do and with the same prayer. Yes, action is important and…sometimes there is just so much we can do. That’s where taking the time in prayer to ask what’s the next and best step for me as to a certain situation and listen for what it is helps me stay centered and not pulled in a hundred directions in trying to heal the world. (holding you in my heart) May peace prevail for all!

  5. Carl D’Agostino has offered you a wise prayer to have in mind in such instances.

    By all means, do consider yourself a complice — if you don’t do anything to raise awareness, if you don’t find, join, or even organize a cause or initiative, if you don’t find a means to help. For, as the song goes, “None of us are free, if one of us is chained”

    Just remember — there are thousands, millions of pitholes on this planet, where mercy and a mere moment of happiness don’t ever see the light of day. You can’t work for everything — make your pick and pray for the rest. Carl is right, you cannot carry the guilt of the whole world.

    And don’t think the US is the sole country where mass media hides the truth. But you’re more isolated on your continent, while other countries have the privilege (?) of proximity, news leaks and, finally, undeniable evidence. Unfortunately, people prefer to “not know” everywhere, I assure you…

    • “None of us are free, if one of us is chained.” These are the truest of words! 🙂

      You’re right, there are people everywhere choosing not to know upsetting truths. And no, the U.S. is not the only country with a media practice of hiding damaging truths. But I don’t live in those other countries – I live here in the U.S., and so my fight for peace/justice/equality/etc. is here, where I have the power to use my vote, to use my voice, to use the freedoms we have here to fight for changes in the way our media and foreign policy affect/decimate the lives of those in other countries.

      You are absolutely correct when you said: “…consider yourself an accomplice if you don’t do anything to raise awareness, if you don’t find, join, or even organize a cause or initiative, if you don’t find a means to help.” I am so glad you said this, because it is my belief to the core, and I love that you feel this way, too!

      I refuse to be a silent accomplice to genocide. I don’t care how controversial the issue may be. Because it’s not about politics anymore. It’s about premeditated mass murder.

      And so, my work begins…

    • It’s interesting – most Westerners assume Africa as the place with the most heinous soldiers who would do these unconscionable acts to the most innocent of victims. It doesn’t occur to us that an assumed ‘civilized’ country’s army would be capable of deliberately shooting children or pregnant women.

      You know the ‘civilized’ country I’m speaking about, Ninja. Guess again.

  6. I have no words for this beautifully written post from a tortured soul- I hate that you had to see images that will be with you for the rest of your life- I’m sorry that those images will never go away!

  7. Serenity Prayer

    God grant me the serenity
    to accept the things I cannot change;
    courage to change the things I can;
    and wisdom to know the difference.

    You cannot carry the guilt of the whole world. There are dozens of places of hell on this earth. I try to live never to be the cause of someone’s misfortune and never pass up the opportunity to perform a charitable act. That is all I can do.

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