Egypt: Sign the petition
I respectfully suggest Change should try to influence our own government rather than Mubarak if it wants to be effective for the Egyptian people, in particular Egyptian women, who have a lot to lose if the resulting government is not a secular government.
The Egyptian people are doing just fine telling Mubarak to resign. But Obama is not capable of understanding what he should be doing without pressure from US citizens. We must make the human rights connections because he never does.
A petition from US citizens should be going to Hillary Clinton and Barack Hussein Obama. It should say:
1. We US citizens demand the US through its ambassadors and support staff, facilitate the process of implementing a secular constitution in Egypt (as we did in Iraq and Afghanistan).
2. We US citizens demand the US provide the Egyptian opposition and the Egyptian people's street organizers with a model Bill of Rights and constitution which protects human rights, guarantees religious freedom, freedom of the press and women’s rights. Additionally, the constitution should be a vehicle for democracy's checks and balances. We as the US should lobby for our US constitutional model or a European constitutional model which emphasizes the participation of the electorate. The Egyptians can choose between proffered secular models of governance. The US should use teach-ins, leaflets, newspapers, and appearances on Egyptian TV and radio. US should use Al Jeezera, radio and all media everywhere in the Mideast to teach about the constitutions and governmental processes related to secular society.
3. We US citizens demand that food be sent and delivered specifically to the Egyptian people, not through UN non-profits, but by the US military, at least until the Egyptian elections.
4. We US citizens demand that Egyptian Foreign Aid money now used for the Egyptian military be used for the above three purposes while we still pay military salaries but do not buy military supplies that might be looted or used against the people.
The petition Change.org started to Mubarak and his cabinet is fine but US citizens should be doing more. Our duty is to influence our own oligarch ruling class as we did not do with the Iranian revolution. Let's not make that same mistake again, thinking BO will do the right thing on his own. Please start such a petition. I know I will post it on my blog, as will many others.
I want a widget for Hillary and Obama and the above demands. So please develop a petition for our own deaf corporate rulers.
Here below is the petition Change.org is sending to Mubarak, as they explain in their letter below, because two Egyptians asked them to do so. I printed their letter below so you can deal with them and tell them what you believe.
Late on Saturday night, two pro-Democracy activists -- a young man and a young woman who've asked that we not use their names out of fear of imprisonment and torture -- started a petition on Change.org, dictating the text to an ally over a phone line because the government has shut down the internet throughout the country.
These Egyptians -- activists participating in what is being called the "January 25 Movement" -- believe we're at a possible tipping point within the country. The Egyptian army has is siding with the protesters, the President has already been forced to dismiss his entire cabinet, and there are unconfirmed reports that some members of the ruling family are leaving the country.
These Egyptian activists believe that a flood of international support right now can help to change the course of Egypt's history for decades to come.
This is extremely urgent -- please don't wait to take action. Click here now to add your name to this critical petition for democracy started by these two Egyptian activists on behalf of the January 25 Movement:
Thanks for taking action today,
Patrick and the Change.org Team
P.S. Here's the text of the petition:
On January 25, we the people of Egypt took to the streets to demand our rights!
We are not unified by one party, class or religion: we are not Muslim and we are not Christian, we are not rich and we are not poor - we are the multifaceted people of Egypt - Muslims and Christians and Egyptians of all classes.
We demand our civil, political and human rights.
We demand the immediate resignation of the president and parliament.
We demand a new constitution.
We demand free and fair elections.
We demand the complete and total release of all political prisoners and detainees.
We demand the return of open access to all communication networks.
We demand that the police stop shooting at us, stop their brutality and stop their attacks on journalists.
We are the January 25 movement, and we are not going to stop until our demands are met!
We call on Egyptians and our international supporters to sign this petition of support, which will be sent to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, officials in the interior and foreign ministries, and Egyptian embassies all over the world.