Stop the Destruction of Art at Guantánamo
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Detainees at the United States military prison camp known as Guantánamo Bay began to make art as soon as they arrived. A current exhibit in New York City is displaying some of these evocative works, made by men held without trial, some for nearly 15 years, who paint the sea again and again although they cannot reach it. (Information taken from www.artfromguantanamo.com).
Now, the Pentagon has declared that all Guantánamo-made art is “property of the U.S. government” and says that no more art can leave Guantánamo. If a detainee is released, his art will be burned. Current detainees will only be able to keep a limited number of artworks; whatever the guards deem to be “excess” will also be destroyed. (Information taken from http://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/world/americas/guantanamo/article185088673.html).
The exhibit includes artwork from both former and current detainees. The current detainees, most of whom have never had charges filed against them, much less fair trials, would be drastically affected by this policy. Taking away their ability to find and create beauty and communicate with the outside world through their paintings, drawings, and sculpture is both incredibly petty and incredibly cruel.
Help us send a message to the Pentagon by signing this petition. Let them know that burning art is something done by fascist and terrorist regimes – but not by the American people.
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