Hashtags and Hypocrisy on Human Rights IssuesKaitlin Fellrath | June 18, 2014
Every person with a social media account has probably seen the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls. The First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama, even joined the Twitter campaign calling for the return of over two hundred girls kidnapped by Nigerian terrorists. Yet these girls are just a fragment of the people whose lives have been torn apart by violence in Nigeria. Thousands of people have died in the conflict, with over three thousand dying this year alone. Villages are being emptied of their residents and burned to the ground. Schoolchildren are afraid to go to school, fearing that the terrorists will target them next.
The crisis in Nigeria is horrifying to any person with a moral compass. People rightly raise their voices in outrage, calling for a peaceful resolution to the violence perpetrated by those with no respect for human life. Yet every time I see the hashtag, #BringBackOurGirls, I am reminded not only of the kidnapped Nigerian girls, but also of the many human rights abuses all over the world, even those within our own nation. I am also reminded of the millions of lives lost through abortion, and the baby girls who are lost forever. I am reminded of China’s one-child policy, which has resulted in gender selection and forced abortions. Where are the hashtags for these girls? Where is the international outcry? Why isn’t the First Lady calling for an end to this violence? I am waiting on the answer.