Quotes from comparative human rights conference (Released: 2/4/00)
by Sherry Fisher, Office of University Communications
STORRS, Conn. -- These quotes are from the Feb. 3 conference on comparative human rights, part of a comparative human rights project that stems from the University of Connecticut's partnership with the African National Congress of South Africa. The conference featured speakers who are children of human rights activists in the U.S. and South Africa. The UConn-ANC partnership makes the University the sole repository of ANC documents and historical materials which will be kept in the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center on the Storrs campus. Also involved is an oral history projec t with the ANC by UConn's Center for Oral History. Photos are available on the web at http://server.pr.uconn.edu/public/anc/.
Sheila Sisulu, Ambassador to the United States from
Judge Dumisa Ntsebeza, chief investigator and judge of
the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission:
"The interim Constitution, in its preamble, had argued that South Africa, having come out of a past that had been marked by racial strife and division and conflict, had to transcend that past in its quest for peace and reconciliation. The constitution argued for the reconstruction of South African society along lines that would promote human rights."
"In this country (United States) the race/class issue remains unresolved. And it will remain, in my view, one of the sticking points in the struggle for civil rights. And perhaps the most dramatic way, and the most dramatic reminder of race-based failure of justice in this country is coming to you via Hollywood in the form of The Hurricane."
Nontombi Naomi Tutu, educator, daughter of Archbishop
Nkosinathi Biko, journalist, consultant, son of Steve
Biko, South African student leader who was murdered in jail in
"We remember them as icons, but they were ordinary human beings. They were fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, people whose lives had meaning beyond just the political."
Paula Young Shelton, educator, activist, daughter of
former Ambassador Andrew Young:
"There is no more important issue on the world's agenda than children."
Paul Robeson Jr., writer, activist, son of Paul Robeson,
civil rights activist, attorney: