Hi everyone. This post will be short. This week, January 21st to 28th, activists, led by Palestinian journalist Bisan Owda, are calling for a global strike to push for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza. In Bisan’s words: “Strike from the economic movements, work and your normal life because nothing is normal in this life. Strike as much as you can and protest…for a whole week or until this madness ends! You can disrupt the economies that support genocide and make your voices and our voices heard!”
Israel has massacred over 25,000 Palestinians, including over 10,000 children, and unless we stop it, will continue to do so, with support from the US, UK, France, Germany, and Canada, countries that are themselves guilty of multiple war crimes and genocides.
If like millions of people around the world, you’re angry and heartbroken by what’s happening, please join in the strike. Here are some things you can do this week:
Hi everyone. As you can guess from the title, this blog post will be serious and likely anger some people.
Over the past few days, as lifesaving food, water, energy, and internet are cut off for people in Gaza, the Israeli government has already massacred over 8,000 people, half of them children. Israel has trapped thousands under rubble with its bombs, plans to kill more civilians, and is displacing a million Palestinians from one end of an open-air prison to another.
We must call it for what it is: ethnic cleansing and genocide, committed by the Israeli government against Palestinians in Gaza.
Hi everyone. This blog post will upset some of my colleagues and likely lose me a few followers, and possibly even some friends. I understand. But having a platform comes with the responsibility of using it to speak up against injustice.
I know the past several days have weighed heavily on everyone’s mind as we learned of the horrifying atrocities committed by Hamas. The already high level of antisemitism has increased over the years, culminating in last week’s violence and brutality against Israeli civilians, including children and the elderly. The horror is too much for many of us to fully comprehend. There are still hostages being held and people still suffering. As a society and as a sector we must condemn the terror and cruelty committed by Hamas.
And as vocally we must condemn the Israeli government’s response, which has been to launch a second Nakba, a horrific level of death and destruction, on Palestine and its people. 2.3 million Palestinians live in Gaza. Half of them are children. Cutting off food, water, and energy, and ordering civilians to evacuate Northern Gaza while raining death on families fleeing for their lives and vowing to do more—this is genocide; this is ethnic cleansing. We must be firm in condemning these war crimes, especially as the US government is openly supporting the Israeli government and its violence and inhumanity against Palestinian civilians, including children, who are not Hamas.
I am still reeling from this op-ed published a few days ago. A time of relentless attacks on our communities and on democracy itself requires our leaders to take bold stances, not engage in the white moderation and both-siding that has led to the rise of antivaxxers, climate change deniers, flat-earthers, and people who think Love Actually is a good movie. (I said what I said!)
However, progressive-leaning philanthropy has always been like this. Months ago I was having lunch with a colleague who works at a prominent national foundation. We were lamenting how risk-averse progressive-leaning funders are, how board trustees and CEOs are hesitant to take bold actions.
“It’s also the GCs,” said my colleague, “the General Counsels. They have a lot of power and often prevent foundations from doing anything even remotely risky.”
Today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Those of us who are in nonprofit, philanthropy, and other fields focused on making the world better rely on his words as a beacon for our work. Which is why this week we will be inundated with MLK quotes.
Before we quote him, though, let’s do some serious reflections about Dr. King and what he said and what he stood for. Otherwise, we run the risk of choosing the least controversial quotes, the ones that don’t make us uncomfortable or force us to confront our privileges or change the way we do things. Then we feel good about ourselves and continue perpetuating the injustice he fought against.