Today is a terribly sad day for the rights of children. Just on this one day there are at least four major headline news stories on the wire about the destruction of the rights of children, appearing in The NY Times, The Washington Post and CNN.
It seems to me that more and more, children are being singled out for punishment, retribution and abuse probably because they are such easy targets and really pose little or no threat of retaliation.
According to a story in the NY Times, "...Girls were systematically imprisoned in houses, held until Boko Haram extracted the ones it had chosen for 'marriage' or other purposes....They abducted many girls and they said they were going to marry them."
"Girls can marry from the age of nine and most 'pure girls' will be married by 16 or 17, according to a lengthy treatise published by female supporters of the Islamic State....The model preferred by infidels in the West failed the minute that women were 'liberated' from their cell in the house," according to the Al-Khanssaa Brigade, an all-female branch of the Islamic State.
"ISIS has stepped up the use of children in its bloody campaign of terror, the United Nations says -- subjecting them to horrors that include putting price tags on them to sell as slaves.... 'We have had reports of children, especially children that are mentally challenged, who have been used as suicide bombers, most probably without them even understanding what has happened or what they have to expect,'" said Renate Winter, an expert with the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child.
"I once heard at a wedding a father say, 'I sometimes have to hit my children a little but never in the face, so as to not demean them.' How nice, I thought, he has a sense of dignity," the Pope said. "When he punishes, he does it right and moves on." This from, of all people, Pope Francis.
One thing to notice about all of these incidents is that there are NO children to speak out in protection of their rights. There are no children able to fight back. There are no children to defend themselves against these attacks. They are an easy target and they are being attacked on all fronts.
How outraged we were with the water boarding scandal and the other human rights issues which surfaced at Guantanamo, and how unmoved we are by these violations. Well those were adults and these are children. Children are, after all, expendable, especially if they are NOT OUR CHILDREN.
In the past when any group was being decimated, the world was quiet -- during the days of the Soviet Gulag, during the days of the Nazi terror, during the days of the Armenian genocide.
WE MUST NOT ALLOW THAT TO HAPPEN HERE.
I call on all people who have the courage, all people who have in their hearts a love for children, all people who respect the rights of children and disdain these depredations to join in a concerted effort to assure that we do not remain silent.
We must flood the UN with our message. We must flood our political leaders in whatever nation we live in with our message. We must flood the press with our message. We must speak out as one "mob" of humanity. We must become the voices of those who have no voices.
CHILDREN ARE NOT EXPENDABLE...CHILDREN ARE NOT CHATAL PROPERTY...CHILDREN ARE REAL, LIVING, BREATHING HUMAN BEINGS.