I know that the contents on this site at first glance can be overwhelming. That the disheartening facts made available here can cripple the soul.
So how does one overcome the sense of paralysis that takes over all of us when we face such seemingly insurmountable obstacles and depressing news that look totally beyond our powers to overcome and which makes us want to turn away with the feeling that trying to do anything at all would just be futile?
The formidable task of establishing human rights for North Koreans can only be accomplished when you do two things:
first, realize that you are not alone; that there is a large and growing movement of activists passionately committed to protecting the rights of oppressed North Koreans. This community of shared compassion can be a great source of encouragement, inspiration, and perseverance.
second, take your eyes off the wall and focus on each brick. Please let me elaborate.
The Great Wall of China would not have been built if the common worker had become preoccupied with what the emperor was planning to build. The 4,500 miles long, 10 meters high, 5 meters wide wall was built when each worker was focused on doing his or her own part in laying each brick one at a time.
Likewise significant progress can be made and paralysis can be overcome only when a person takes his or her eyes off the seemingly impossible goal of bringing freedom to North Koreans and instead concentrates on completing the mundane, apparently insignificant tasks which are in his or her power to do right now.
One simple but crucial brick any American can lay is to write his or her member of Congress asking that more North Korean refugees seeking asylum be welcomed into the United States pursuant to the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004. As of date, 6 refugees have been accepted.
Over 10% of North Korea’s population of 22 million have been starved to death in the past decade. Subsequently 250,000 N. Korean refugees have fled government-induced famine in North Korea to reside as illegal immigrants in China with hopes of gaining asylum in free countries. Northeast China is the North Korean’s real-life Casablanca. In China these North Korean refugees live like rats and are hunted down, sexually exploited, and outright executed.
Another simple but crucial brick anyone can lay is to donate money to NGOs on the ground in China which provide basic necessities for these North Korean refugees as well as transportation of escape to South Korea and nearby countries. Unlike unmonitored aid sent to Pyongyang, funds donated to reputable NGOs in China benefit the North Koreans who are suffering the most with greater certainty. Further, by helping North Korean refugees in China, more North Koreans back home will have greater incentive to escape to China for such support. The ensuing flood of refugees from North Korea to China would cause unbearable pressure on both the Pyongyang and Beijing regimes, irreparably disrupting the status quo.
We need to direct people’s eyes away from the impossible task of establishing a monumental wall to the doable task of brick-laying. People need help to see beyond the obstacles presented by the most closed, controlled, and evil regime in our era to see the simple reality that the atrocities being committed against North Koreans inside North Korea and China can be stopped by average people doing their part in laying each brick one at a time. We need more brick-layers than rich, powerful, or smart people to make a lasting difference in North Korea.
So send this plan to those around you as an introduction to North Korea that will empower rather than paralyze them with the knowledge of what their part is in establishing human rights in that country.
A list of other bricks can be found under the Get Involved section of this site. The Announcements section also regularly shows things that can be done.