I don’t know who coined the phrase “Be the change you want to see in the world,” but I do know of at least one badass woman who’s living it: Amal Clooney.
Sure, most of us never heard of her until she got engaged to her swoon-worthy husband, George, but she is amazing in her own right. The Lebanese-born lawyer has worked on international human rights issues at the highest level, including as a special advisor on Syria to UN Special Envoy Kofi Anon. She also served on the International Criminal Tribunal for war crimes in the former Yugoslavia.
This is a woman who knows a LOT about injustice around the world and she has done a lot to right some major wrongs.
(She’s also defended Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, but everyone makes mistakes.)
Anyway, Ms. Clooney and the American actor she married started a foundation in 2016. Mr. Clooney has a history of activism on global issues as well (check out his history of activism on human rights in Sudan). The stated mission of the Clooney Foundation for Justice is “to advance justice in courtrooms, communities, and classrooms around the world.”
Sadly, one of the places they feel needs some advancement of justice is the United States. Even though we're supposed to be beyond such things, we seem to have an upsurge of racially motivated hate groups on our hands here in the old US of A.
In the wake of Charlottesville, the Clooney Foundation has pledged a million dollars to the Southern Poverty Law Center. Though details of the project have not been released yet, a statement from the SPLC indicates that the donation will serve to build their capacity to combat hate groups.
The SPLC currently monitors over 1,600 known hate groups across the country, and uses litigation to win justice for people and organizations harmed by these groups or individuals in the groups.
By the way? The fact that there are that many hate groups frolicking around the U.S. right now makes me ill.
The Clooneys are truly a human rights power couple and I’m grateful to them for their willingness to pledge money to the fight for justice in these complicated times. Thank you Amal! (And also, George.)