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Structural Violence

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California State University, Dominguez Hills
University of Wisconsin, Parkside
Created: January 4, 2001
Latest update: September 4, 2005
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Eek! Structural Violence Got Me!.

The Eek! guelph started from our need to get each other's attention when we were swamped by e-mail. It's designed to recognize that sometimes we need a brief moment of attention, when we need it, not at a regularly appointed time, or whenever the Other happens to get to it. EEK!

Today, as we struggle to understand so many hurts, so many slights, so many losses to the workers and the poor, the EEK! guelph says a lot. But I need to work on a happy guelph to go with him, for it's not the structural violence we want to share in our guelph world; it's the comfort and understanding and caring that will help us find love and a lovable world around and in spite of the structural violence.

Structural violence and much of the pain we cause each other comes of a failure to see the system of rules and organization we have created. The tragedy in New Orleans has brought that out in images that will never be erased from our minds. Whether or not anyone meant discrimination in failing to evacuate so many of the minority poor, that's what happened. Up front and personal. And the images can't be erased. We didn't have to have racist feelings to hurt these people. We hurt them be allowing them to be invisible in our world, by not noticing them, as we left them behind. The violence, the pain, the harm, came from our NOT seeing the humans, the fellow citizens of this country, we should have seen. That in the law, would be called a crime of omission. In the church or synagogue or mosque, a sin of omission. In the real world, we killed, whether we meant to or not.

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