Stories: Activism

  • Unshakable in Uganda

    Clare Byarugaba was in church on a Sunday in 2009 when her pastor urged his congregation to sign a petition backing antigay legislation being considered in Uganda’s parliament. She surveyed the massive sanctuary of her evangelical megachurch in Kampala, Uganda’s capital. “How many gay people,” she wondered, “are in this place?” Most of...

  • Who Is Michael Martelly and Why Is the Haitian Grassroots Movement Protesting Against Him?

    Today [the anniversary of the Battle of Vertieres (1803) in the war for independence] marks the second of a series of  planned street protests against the government of Michel Martelly.  The protest are organized by Fòs Patriotik ou Respè Konstitsyon [FOPARK] a coalition of pro Lavalas supporters, students, lawyers and  human rights activists. ...

  • Zambia: Picking Up the Pieces

    My name is Dorcas N. Chewe. I am 44 years old, and I am HIV positive, as are my two sons. Before I begin my story, let me say that living with HIV is not a laughing matter, nor is it something to boast about. But it is also important to know that living with HIV does not make one...

  • Women, War and Peace

    Five years ago, during the 2008 elections, Zimbabwean women were punished for claiming their right to have a say in the future of their country. Their move towards fair involvement in the political process as activists, advocates, interested citizens and voters were opposed by perpetrators' use of rape and other forms of extreme violence including beating, torture and murder....

  • Sunday in a South African Township 2

    I came to Tshepisong to meet Olga. When she had only two children herself, and she was only 30 years old, Olga began her life as a foster mother to AIDS orphans -- four children of her sister's, and later two children of her aunt's. The Christian Science Monitor has been writing about Olga and her journey since 2007. ...

  • Persecution and Death Threats to Haitian Camp Activist and Human Rights Lawyer

    Following the death in police custody of camp resident, Civil Meris on April 15, 2013, Jean-Louis Elijah (Elie) Joseph and Esther Pierre of Camp Acra and Adoquin in Delmas 33, along with the camps' lawyer, Patrice Florvilus of Defenders of the Oppressed, are now living under threat of arrest and believe their lives are in danger.  It seems pertinent to...

  • “The Wasps Have Been Knocked Out of the Nest”

    UPDATE President Aristide today held a press conference in which he announced that Lavalas’s participation in the next elections – mobilization begins! Two years after his March 2011 return to Haiti, former President and Fanmi Lavalas leader, Jean-Bertrand Aristide made his first appearance in public. President Aristide had been called to court by the investigative judge, Yvickel...

  • Daw Aung San Suu Kyi on Living “Never Free From Fear”

    Burmese activist Daw Aung San Suu Kyi spoke calmly and deliberately, elegant in her silk sarong, red flowers in her black hair. But as she addressed an audience of nearly 700 in Sprague Hall and an overflow audience in the Yale Law School’s Levinson Auditorium, what she spoke of was the unremitting anxiety of life during five decades of...