Thursday, June 28, 2007

Killing Women is NOT a Game

I know, I know…I’ve been missing in action.
This summer I’m an intern for Mujeres Iniciando en las Américas (MIA), an organization that seeks to create positive and safe living conditions for women in Guatemala. One of MIA’s top goals is to decry violence against women in Guatemala. Emerging statistics suggest that the violence against women has now taken the form of femicide. Yes, I said it, FEMICIDE. It’s an ugly monster that both the US and Guatemalan government does not want to recognize. But so is GENOCIDE and that took place in Guatemala during its 36-year long civil war. It took the U.S. government a few years after the war to officially recognize it’s involvement in those massacre campaigns and it’s taking Guatemala even longer to judiciously try it’s military leaders in command during the conflict.

In order to bring any change to Guatemala, Lucia Muñoz, director of MIA, states that we need to increase awareness in the US, in the international community, and in Guatemala so that political pressure is placed on the Guatemalan government to change its ways. There are so many reasons why the U.S. wouldn’t want to get involved, especially since it has already sponsored and encouraged the 36-year long civil war through funding and through the training of Guatemalan soldiers at the School of the Americas.

Above is a draft of where my time has gone these past few weeks. I’ve found that creating documents is not so much fun…click the image to see a larger version and to learn more about this issue.

This flyer will be passed out on July 4, 2007 in Guatemala to protest the International Olympic Committee's presence in the nation. On this day, the committee will decide where to host the 2014 Winter Olympic Games. "What's wrong with the Olympic planning committee meeting in Guatemala?" you might ask. Well, the Olympics are founded on bringing nations together peacefully through sports. Why would a nation where women are facing the most extreme form of sexist terrorism be allowed to host an organization founded on peace? It’s also a great opportunity to gain media attention.

Though I’ll be staying in the US taking care of things behind the scenes, I’ll keep you all posted.

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