Editor, Daily Nexus,

They have to know. They have to know it’s not OK. This phrase has constantly run through my mind since Tuesday’s screening of “Occupation 101” by Students for Justice in Palestine. A brilliant documentary film produced and directed by Sufyan and Abdallah Omeish, it details the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories and the oppression of the Palestinians. It is geared towards an American audience, addressing not only the occupation, but also fallacies in the American media. The film opened the eyes of the over 400 people in attendance.

This film is not one that can be forgotten after viewing. It is an absolute tragedy that so little attention has been paid by the American people to such a dire issue. As an American myself, I was appalled that a large portion of my tax dollars fund an occupation. I was embarrassed as a Christian to see people in the film using rhetoric to champion an alleged biblical right. Whether you are Christian, Muslim, Jewish or have no religious affiliation, you are affected.

Having a simple knowledge of the situation now obligates a response. How can people idly sit by knowing what is happening? How can people not do anything at all to stop it or begin simple humanitarian steps? How can we as a people continue to support this occupation? If you were one of 400 people at the screening, you are now presented with two options. You can sit in ignorance or remain entrenched with the “the illusion of knowledge,” as the film says. Or you can be active. Question. Have a desire to learn. You have a duty, no matter who you are, to speak for the people who can’t, that are suffering in inhumane circumstances. This is not because you can, but because you must.