Monday, July 8, 2013
I'm not going to lie: The video above, featuring Yasiin Bey (the rapper and actor formerly known as Mos Def) undergoing the same force-feeding procedure as hunger-striking Guantanamo detainees is among the most difficult-to-watch videos I've seen in quite some time.
The video, and Bey's participation (I hesitate to call it a stunt, because I can't fathom any circumstances under which the voluntary insertion of a nasogastric tube seems like a good idea, though you may feel differently) appears to be in response to the U.S. Navy's solution to the protests being undertaken by Guantanamo detainees.
According to the Washington Post, detainees began the strike as a protest over their conditions and their indefinite confinement," and that more than 106 detainees are participating in the strike. Of those, "as many as 44 [are] being force-fed twice a day to prevent dangerous weight loss."
Last Monday, four of the prisoners filed a motion to halt the force-feeding, claiming that it's an inhumane practice that violates medical ethics; the Justice Department, however, has countered that feeding prisoners with a nasogastric tube to prevent their death is humane and "done in a way to minimize any pain."
If the video above is as legitimate as it seems, I'm not sure their efforts have been enough thus far.