Darfur Hunger Strike

Saturday, April 14, 2007

A Hunger For Justice
Darfur Becomes One Man's Cause for Deprivation

By Delphine Schrank
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, April 14, 2007

Forty-four days without food and counting, and he thinks his mind is starting to slow. There are days he is so nauseated, he can barely move. His legs, he says, have swelled up from a problem with his kidneys. His body doesn't give off heat anymore. But his resolve -- his heart, he would say -- hasn't faltered. If need be, he says, he'll take this to the end.

A few hundred yards away from a statue of Mahatma Gandhi on Massachusetts Avenue, 55-year-old Start Loving, a former business executive known to his friends and family as Jay McGinley, lives on the sidewalk in front of the Sudanese Embassy, a month into surviving on nothing but water and the will to stir the world into stopping genocide. Bearded, sunburned and dirty from weeks on the street, he could be another homeless wretch -- except that hanging like wings off his shoulders are two giant laminated orange placards that read "Darfur Hunger Strike March 1."

"Yes, we knew it was 4 years. Yes we knew 450,000 exterminated. Yes we knew 2.5 million in concentration camps of forced starvation, rape, mutilation, murder and disease. We in the US agonized for you our Darfur brothers and sisters. We had meetings, and more meetings. We fasted from luxuries for one whole day per year. ONE ENTIRE DAY - WE ABSTAINED FROM ONE OF OUR LUXURIES! On another day we formed a human chain. On another day we sent postcards. POSTCARDS! In all there were one million! We divested our Colleges and States. Sure the real money came from China but it helped a little and it gave us great connections and enhanced our resumes too! Two different sunny afternoons we went to parks for demonstrations, and we even listened to some of the speakers! Wow, we really pulled out all the stops! link

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