Looks like we’re going to the Save Darfur rally in DC this Sunday. I say it ‘looks like’ because although we have plane tickets, and hotel reservations, and have boarded the animals, one can never overestimate my family’s capacity for screwing up even the most settled plans. Used to be there was a one-to-one ratio between plans and actions. As we added kids and middle age that ratio slipped to about three-to-one. Barring last minute crises, however, I’ll be there with the wife and the kids and possibly some idiotic sign.
I wanted to drive, but apparently the prospect of six hours each way listening to me berate other drivers, was less attractive to my wife than a mere hour of listening to me whine about the airlines. So we’re flying. Coach, God help me. And then we’ll have to take public transportation from the hotel in Pentagon City to the Capitol. Airports, airplanes, rental cars, Metro, the chanting of slogans, the off-key singing of John Lennon tunes — gosh it’s everything I like.
I will try to take some pictures and post something on the rally here and at Mighty Middle. I’d like to last long enough to hear Barack Obama speak, but he’ll probably be preceded by quite an array of screeching mini-pols, and the general level of earnestnes and self-satisfaction may be hard for me to take for long.
Still, this is a genuinely important cause, and a good educational opportunity for my kids. “Dad, what’s genocide?” Followed by overly-long and endlessly discursive explanation from pedantic father, followed by, “Oh. Can we get a lemonade?” Followed, almost immediately by, “I have to pee.”
So, it’ll be fun.
All cynicism aside, this is not an issue to ignore. 60 years ago we said “Never Again.” That’s become “Never Again, and Again and Again.” Cambodia, Kosovo, Rwanda, Darfur. We ought, as a species, to have some ability to enforce minimal levels of decency. The deliberate extermination of human beings because they aren’t the right race, or religion, or because they don’t conform to some mad ideological vision, seems to me to be something we can all agree is unacceptable in every case, everywhere. This is not an impossible situation — the smallest concerted effort by the rich and powerful nations of the world could put an end to this.