lasted 262 hours.
Those that have the privilege of knowing Lisa Dougan, Resolve Uganda's Director of Communications - and the force of pure soul that she is - will particularly appreciate her reflection from downtown Oklahoma City, addressed to all who have been a piece of making this epic effort possible and (fingers crossed) successful.
It is a privilege to write to you this evening from downtown Oklahoma City, on the sidewalk outside Senator Tom Coburn's office. This concrete patch has been my home for the past 127 hours.
I am joined by forty remarkable individuals. We come from different states and stages of life, but share one thing: An unrelenting desire for an end to Joseph Kony's horrific violence
And that is why we are committed to “hold out" right here -- all day, every day -- until Senator Coburn removes his “hold” and allows the LRA Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act to pass. Our plea: for the Senator to personally engage in finding a viable compromise that gets the bill passed, while upholding his principles. Failure is not an option for us because the price would be too high.
Practically speaking, that has meant sleeping on the concrete in 30 degree weather the past four nights, standing along streets for hours each day, forgoing showers and heat and shelter, missing classes, and even – for some – losing jobs. Being here has meant tears and sickness and discomfort.
But it has also caused us to come alive, and unite behind a purpose we believe in. We are not here to be pitied or praised. We are hopeful. This campaign has grown into something far bigger than one bill, one Senator, or any one of us. People here can see it.
And soon, I am confident that it will serve as proof that justice can prevail when we are resolved to make sacrifices for peace and pursue it together.
I wish you could personally meet the crazy activist-squatters out here with me. I desperately want you to know people like Jordan Perl, a 19-year-old who drove out to Oklahoma from Southern California, knowing that it would cost him his job. I wish I could introduce you to James, the security guard who was so moved by our efforts that he offered to let us sleep inside his building's lobby so we wouldn't freeze at night. or to the police officer who held up traffic to ask if we were taking donations and proceeded to hand me money.
Most importantly, I wish you could join me in watching the hearts of Oklahomans won over as we respectfully, intelligently, and powerfully share our hearts and minds with any who will listen. And they are listening! I am watching an entire city fall in love with this small group of strangers who have made a home out of a concrete plaza downtown.
There is something great and beautiful growing here---a new breed of politicians who values human connection, sacrifice, and integrity. They don't vilify, over-simplify, or compromise truth and integrity for easy results or self-aggrandizement.
Most likely, this will not end any time soon. But your support is a continued source of inspiration for the people out here, and we ask for you to keep standing in this fight with us.
The best way to do that is to:
2) Support Resolve Uganda's commitment to the passage of the bill and lasting peace in central Africa. In doing so, you are truly investing in a new and powerful way of advocating for global justice. I am seeing it first hand in Oklahoma City.
Thank you for standing with us. My eyelids are heavy and my body is fatigued, but I am confident that we will eventually succeed. I believe this bill will pass, and in the process, we will each have the privilege of taking part in something truly transformative. It is already happening.