sobre ebriedad

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Happenings since we left Colombia

In the month since I’ve returned…

  • An assassination attempt was made on Catholic priest and human rights defender Padre Alberto Franco of the Inter-ecclesial Commission for Justice and Peace, one of our delegation’s most beloved partners.
  • A women’s association of pineapple growers in the Putumayo department have had their entire harvest fumigated aerially–again.
  • Angela Bello, director of the National Foundation in Defense of Women’s Rights (FUNDHEFEM), was found dead in suspicious circumstances after an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
  • Land rights advocates won a small victory when an agriculture judge issued an injunction for up to six months, blocking mining companies from operating illegally on collectively-owned indigenous land in Choco and Antioquia.

And that’s just what I’ve been able to keep up with. In the meantime, the incredible International Team with Witness for Peace has uploaded our delegation’s Report on the Impact of the U.S. War on Drugs in Colombia (translated Spanish version also available). Thank you to everyone who told us their stories and everyone who worked on this important document.


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Faces of Addiction: Portraits of Hunts Point

Mary Alice and new jewelry (click through for full story – Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Just Judge)

I spent nearly two years working at the clinic on Hunts Point Ave., in the neighborhood of the South Bronx where Chris Arnade takes portraits. Many of the faces—of people who would be labelled by some as addicts, prostitutes, pimps, dealers—are familiar to me. I knew them simply as patients. My relationship with Hunts Point, now, is terribly complicated. I no longer go there, but I remember it every single day. It has stayed with me. Despite that, I hope that those who remember coming to me at the clinic, remember being treated with respect, humility, and humanity, as we all always deserve.

Indeed a lot about addiction is ugly, but it does not mean an addict has abdicated every shred of their self-worth.