Earlier today I participated in a Mother’s Day march and rally in solidarity with the mothers of Chibok, Nigeria.
In the lead-up to this afternoon's event, which took place on the Lake St./Marshall Ave. bridge spanning the Mississippi River and linking Minneapolis and St. Paul, the organizers noted the following:
On April 14, over 250 young women were abducted by the Boko Haram militants in northern Nigeria. To date, little has been done to rescue these young women and bring them home safely to their families. We must not accept this indifference and inaction. These girls matter. They are of deep value to their families, communities and to the world at large.
Mother's Day is an opportunity to support the mothers of Nigeria and call for an end to the lives of servitude and rape their kidnapped daughters face if nothing is done. We are calling on Twin Cities mothers, daughters and their loved ones to march in solidarity with the mothers of Nigeria and demand that real efforts be made to bring the girls back . . . back to their mother's arms, back to their homes, back to their educations and to the potential they hold when free to live their lives with safety and dignity.
Related Off-site Links:
Josephine Bakhita: A Saint for Girls Kidnapped in Nigeria – Kittredge Cherry (Jesus in Love Blog, May 7, 2014).
Muslim Leaders Slam Boko Haram for Using Islam to Justify Schoolgirl Kidnappings – Associated Press via Huffington Post (May 8, 2014).
Honoring the Missing Schoolgirls – Nicholas Kristof (New York Times, May 7, 2014).
'I Will Sell Them,' Boko Haram Leader Says of Kidnapped Nigerian Girls – Aminu Abubakar and Josh Levs (CNN, May 6, 2014).
Here's Why Nigeria Hasn't Yet Found Its 300 Missing Girls – Hayes brown (ThinkProgress.org, May 6, 2014).
Real Threat is a Known Market for Children – Rick Gladstone (New York Times, May 7, 2014).
Nigerian Schoolgirls Recall Boko Haram Kidnapping – Amina Abubakar and Robyn Dixon (Los Angeles Times, May 10, 2014).
Boko Haram: Facts, History, and Origins of the Terrorist Group – Oren Dorrell (USA Today via The Huffington Post, May 9, 2014).
Behind the Rise of Boko Haram - Ecological Disaster, Oil Crisis, Spy Games – Nafeez Ahmed (The Guardian, May 9, 2014).
Nigeria Ramps Up Search for Missing Girls – Aljazeera (May 10, 2014).
A Mother’s Anti-War Editorial on #BringBackOurGirls – Meredith Aby-Keirstead (Fight Back! News, May 10, 2014)
Dear Americans, Your Hashtags Won’t #BringBackOurGirls. You Might Actually Be Making Things Worse – Jumoke Balogun (Compare Afrique, May 7, 2014).
The Media is Telling Us the Wrong Story About the Kidnapped Girls in Nigeria – Alexandra Hartmann (PolicyMic.org, May 6, 2014).
In Push to Free Nigerian Girls, a Tangled Web – Elizabeth Williamson, Natalie Andrews and Michael M. Phillips (The Wall Street Journal, May 8, 2014).
In Town of Missing Girls, Sorrow, but Little Progress – Adam Nossiter (New York Times, May 11, 2014).
UPDATE: Boko Haram Release Chilling Videos of Missing Nigerian Schoolgirls and Reveal They Have All Been Forced to Convert to Islam and Will Only Be Released If Islamist Prisoners Are Freed – Ted Thornhill, Jack Doyle and Jason Groves (Daily Mail, May 12, 2014).
See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
The Origins of Mother's Day
A Mother's Day Prayer
Images: Michael J. Bayly.