Across the U.S. on Thursday, April 11, street protests will support prisoners detained at the U.S. prison in Guantánamo who are engaged in a large-scale hunger strike, which began in early February. Some are now in critical condition.
We urge you to show your support for the hunger strikers on Thursday! Post a sign on your office door, make an announcement in your classroom, wear a black armband or don an orange jumpsuit and stand on any corner with your friends or individually.
There have been two actions to support the hunger strikers in Honolulu within the past 10 days. The first was at the Federal Building; the second was at the First Friday Art Walk. We learned a lot.
Many people believe Guantanamo has been closed. No one we met knew about the hunger strike. No one knew that 86 prisoners were "released" years ago, but are still being detained. Many took leaflets (we got out about 400). Some thanked us for speaking out. However, a shocking number of people we met at 1st Friday actually defended torture - a few going so far as arguing that the U.S. should not only torture people and create more prisons like Guantanamo but that they should kill more people who "don't like us".
We have held events focusing on torture many times in the past but have never heard so many ugly comments. We could only surmise that these people had always thought this way, but that the current atmosphere (which includes movies like "Zero Dark Thirty) is emboldening them to openly argue for torture.
Our recent experiences "on the street" underscore the necessity to step up our demand to Shut Down Guantanamo and build support for the courageous hunger strikers. While World Can't Wait-Hawai`i is not organizing another street action on April 11th, we can each - as individuals and as groups - take action that day! Send us reports on what you do at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Be sure to bookmark the national World Can't Website to get the latest news about actions elsewhere, and for more information about the hunger strike at Guantanamo. www.worldcantwait.net.