(A report of a rally for Euna Lee and Laura Ling at the Capitol on Thursday. It is vitally important that we stress the importance of journalistic freedoms and get these two home. – promoted by Brian Leubitz)
For the third time in just under four months, Lisa Ling had the privilege of hearing her sister’s voice. On Tuesday night, Laura Ling phoned home to say that there is only one way for her and Euna Lee to be released from North Korea before their 12 year sentence is complete – the United States government must ask the North Korea government for Amnesty. (More back history in this Calitics diary.)
Hence the theme of the evening at the West Steps of the Capitol on Thursday night. Yellow Ribbons speckled the crowd to show solidarity for the amnesty movement. About 300 people gathered, many shouting “Amnesty! – Send them home!” Signs read “Free Euna Lee and Laura Ling.” Senate Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg and Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner emphasized the same message in their speeches.
(A representative on behalf of Arnold Schwarzenegger also spoke. He promised the crowd that the State was working with the Federal government. A great sigh of relief washed over the crowd as they relaxed in knowing that the Governor was working on fixing this mess. Or not.)
What can the average Calitics reader do to help? Senator Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg answered this question succinctly with the following points:
- Be vocal.
- Keep pushing for our government to ask for amnesty and Laura and Euna’s release.
- Focus on:
- Freedom – and the appreciation of the freedoms we do have here
- Hope – as this helps sustain people, both family members here and Euna and Laura abroad.
Other concrete action items are listed here.
Perhaps the most heart felt moment was when the Ling’s father spoke, stating “If Laura can hear me, my heart says I love her and I miss her.”