Friday, June 29, 2007

Torture Awareness Month Ends, and the Movers and Shakers Couldn't Care Less

Tomorrow is the final day of June, designated by the Torture Abolition and Survivor Support Coalition International and Amnesty International as Torture Awareness Month. Embedded within the month (June 26) was the UN-appointed International Day in Support of Victims and Survivors of Torture.

Computer searches for references over the past 30 days to "torture awareness month" from major U.S. newspapers and heavily trafficked high-end blogs reveal just how much of a shit was given:

Baltimore Sun: 0 references

Boston Globe: 0 references

Chicago Tribune: 0 references

Christian Science Monitor: 0 references

Los Angeles Times: 0 references

Miami Herald: 0 references

New York Times: 0 references

Seattle Times: 0 references

Wall Street Journal: 0 references

Washington Post: 0 references

Okay. We expect silence like this from conventional media. That's why we have progressive bloggers to fill in the gaps. So here are some data from a random selection of big box left-leaning blogs:

Boing Boing: 0 references

Crooks & Liars: 0 references

Daily Kos: 0 references

Majikthise: 0 references (although Lindsay has been mourning the tragic loss of her father this week and hence not posting)

Pandagon: 0 references

The Thinking Blog: 0 references

Think Progress: 0 references (although two very good postings on torture-related news)

But there were a few organizations (almost all of them religious) that took Torture Awareness Month with the gravity it deserves. Kudos to organizations such as Pax Christi, Pace e bene, the Presbyterian Church USA, the Santa Clara Council of Churches, and the hundreds of low-end, small box bloggers who remembered and witnessed. You can get a good idea of who they are by googling "torture awareness month." They may be tiny blips on the blogosphere radar screen, but they're keepin' it real.
By the way: how many people do you reckon were tortured in the time it took to read this post? I dunno, because figures are obviously hard to get. But at least one or two is a safe bet, don't you think?