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Enough! The project to end genocide and crimes against humanity

Cell phone statistics reported by Jason Griffey, July 12, 2009, and posted on The Shifted Librarian

  • numbers (because this arena is very important for us)
    4,100,000,000 number of mobile phone subscriptions in the world
  • over 60% of the people on earth have a mobile phone subscription service
  • in 50 different countries around the world, the number of cellphones per person exceeds 100%  (means more than one cellphone each)  not just places like Korea, but places like Gambia, where 1,000,000 people have access to a telephone, and only 50,000 of those are fixed landlines
  • 90% of the world’s population will have access to a cell phone signal by the end of 2010
  • 2,400,000,000 people using SMS (active users)
    75% of the people who have data access on their phones
  • we’re not good at handling numbers, but 1,200,000 people use email, so twice as many using text messages
  • 2.3 trillion text messages sent in 2008
    20% growth curve over 2007

These numbers are astounding — AND they have more implications than most of us would ever imagine. But what do cell phones and SMS have to do with genocide and human rights? Please read on.

Valerie Love, UConn Libraries Human Rights specialist, pointed me to a site of great worth: enough! The project to end genocide and crimes against humanity.

From their About page, they say:

Genocide and war crimes are not inevitable, and we at Enough want to create noise and action both to stop ongoing atrocities and to prevent their recurrence. Our mission is to help people from every walk of life understand the practical actions they can take to make a difference. Our strategy is to energize diverse communities – including students, religious groups, activists, business leaders, celebrities, and Diaspora networks – to ensure that their voices are heard on some of the most pressing foreign policy and moral challenges facing the world today.

Enough! gathers media together on human rights violations and the effects. Here is a report from CNN on the “Conflict Minerals” found in Congo which empower the militia and military groups, the source of violence against women and girls and much suffering in the region:

Besides informing us of human rights violations which we may be encouraging unknowingly, they give direct instruction to actions which we can take.

CAN YOU HEAR CONGO NOW? CELL PHONES, CONFLICT MINERALS, AND THE WORST SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN THE WORLD (which I have also added to the Readings page on this blog), provides background and current understanding.  Our choices for cell phones and companies have far reaching implications and we need to be aware! Below, find their guide to action from their report on “Conflict Minerals” in the Congo:

How to Make an Impact

The crisis in eastern Congo is fueled by conflict minerals, but we can stop the deadly cycle by using our power as activists and consumers.

1. Join the Movement at www.raisehopeforcongo.org
2. Text “CONGOPLEDGE” (one word, no spaces) to ACTION (228466) or visit www.raisehopeforcongo.org/special-page/conflict-minerals to endorse the Conflict Minerals Pledge.
3. Send emails to the industry leaders and ask them to be a leader on this issue by signing the pledge. Visit www.raisehopeforcongo.org/special-page/conflict-minerals to send your emails now.
4. Call the White House switchboard at 202.456.1414 or write to President Obama at www.whitehouse.gov and ask him to appoint a special envoy for the Great Lakes region.

More reports, audio, and contacts are at this relatively new site — started only in 2006. Thank you to Valerie Love, once again, for giving me this link. It’s a small world and if there is anything we can do to stop these horrific actions by changing our purchasing behavior and being knowledgeable of our sources, we have the power.

Valerie has her own blog: Human Rights Research Blog

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