Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Thousand Sisters

"How a life’s mission can come to you, not in contemplation, but sprawled out on the couch, watching TV. I had a great life—a successful business, a fiancé, a home, and security. But in the wake of my Dad’s death, and soon-to-be thirty years old, I found myself depressed, stretched out on the couch, watching Oprah. It was there that I learned about Congo, widely called the worst place on earth to be a woman. Awakened to the atrocities—millions dead, women being raped and tortured, children starving and dying in shocking numbers—I had to do something"

A Thousand Sisters is Lisa Shannon's story of the something she did. She got off the couch and started to run. Lisa began running to raise money for women in the Congo. Her first run was 30 miles and it was just her. Now Lisa's organization, Run for Congo Women, has marathons all over the US. Lisa details her first two trips to the country, where she meets women and hears their stories. I was impressed with Lisa's writing style. She treated each woman with dignity and respect for who they are and what they have been through. The war in Congo with so many different militias inflicting so much torture, rape and murder on Congo's citizens is filled with horrifying statistics. A Thousand Sisters brings those statistics alive.

What it really is all about, what the war truly boils down to is this: Congo is full of mines that are full of diamonds and minerals like like tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold- that are in all of our consumer electronics products and other goods. Reading A Thousand Sisters makes me question if buying a new cell phone or laptop is really worth the rape and murder of Congolese citizens.

Check out more on Lisa Shannon

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