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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Blackcat2 Bobby Sands (130* d) RE: Bobby Sands 04 Jan 00

Greetings all

I've continued to read the conversation in this thread, though because I have a limited knowledge of the issues that have been discussed in the past few days, I've not added anything myself.

I'm all for thread creep - certainly most of what has been discussed here is fascinating and important - just outside my knowledge base. I'm learning though. Thank you all for your comments.

I realize that the issues discussed are far more personal to others on this list than they ever could be to me. I am an American of most English and German ancestry but that ancestry goes back to Europe 250 - 350 years ago. Consequently my ancestors have been "American" for many generations and I have no "blood" ties with Europe. I look to England and Germany without much difference than I do Peru or Kenya. I do have a connection to Ireland - I fell in love with it's music years ago and because music is such an expression of culture - I fell in love with it's people as well. So I've learned a lot in 20 years. But, because of my non-personal connection and also because of my educational background I feel as though I am able to stay away from the personal reactions so many fall into (as do I on other issues such as religious freedom & civil rights in the U.S.)

I added my comments to this thread because of the original posting - basically musing over Bobby Sands and the other hunger strikers attempts to gain the last bit of freedom allowed them.

Thank you for this discussion. It has been very enlightening. It is scary though, that so many (not just on this list) feel that the many people in Northern Ireland who have committed acts of violence have done so "gleefully"(my word) instead of because they saw it as a last resort. To assume that a group of people who are different from you, happily take the lives of your bretheren without any significant reason. is an act of dehumanization, and as far as I'm concerned, actually contributes to the continuance of violence.

If I am treated like an animal, I will eventually act like one. If I am treated as a human being - with any luck I'll rise to the challenge.

To me, one of the worse things about war - any war - even as Studs Turkel named WWII, "The Good War" is the dehumanization of the enemy. One of the only ways to get people to kill is to make them believe that their enemy is sub-human. I don't know if anyone on the list is of Japanese heritage and was or has family who were interned in the U.S. during WWII, but if there is, I'm sure they could certainly speak from that perspective.

Peace to all and here's to equal rights for all in Northern Ireland as well as everywhere else (my own neighborhood included).

pax yall

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