“It's less futile than sitting at home and turning the radio on” - Ripon demonstrators silent stand in support of peace
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The motion for ‘immediate cease-fire’ in Gaza, called on Wednesday, November 15, was voted against 293 to 125.
The vote resulted in a number of demonstrations across the country amid anger over failure to call for a ceasefire.
Ripon's demonstrators consist of around 20 members who aim to provide the city with a place to stand quietly in support of peace.
Demonstrators spoke collectively about the non-violent protest.
One man who had led the plan to stand said:”The idea came about as the nearest events where we could go make our silent voices heard were either in York or Leeds, and we didn’t want to drive down every Saturday.
“So we said, why don’t we do something locally?
“Let’s see what happens if we do it once and maybe it can snowball.
“Maybe there will be a cease-fire and we won’t have to do this.
“We just wanted somewhere we could represent the need for peace.”
An older lady, who was ready to withstand an unpredictable rain shower, said: “We felt it quite important to not take time over people’s lives.
“It’s so atrocious, silence is the shared language whatever your views on the situation.
“We’re not trying to be political in any way, we want peace for both sides.
“The loss of life, the children and everything in between, is now just abhorrent.”
One middle-aged man was keen to stress the importance of being visible to the public, and to represent the views of many outside of the home, he said: ”We know we can’t do anything.
"Anything we do makes no difference to it.
“You might think standing here may be futile, I understand that.
“But it's less futile than sitting at home and turning the radio on.
“I can’t bear to hear someone else justifying why we’re not having a cease-fire.”
“Although there may be no one listening, if they were listening, this is for all the players in the Middle East and the British system.
“Our government needs to put pressure on for a cease-fire, and stop playing games.
“A child is dying every 10 minutes.
“We are now complicit with blood on our hands.”
A younger man, whose sense of urgency for change was plain to see, said: “We can build up enough momentum as more people become informed.
“Eventually, there can be enough to frighten the government into putting some pressure on.together with other countries
“Hopefully with international pressure, eventually they will change.
“More than 70% of people in Britain want a cease-fire, and there’s no representation for that in our system or media.”
The demonstrators, who stood without obstruction of day to day proceedings were approached by a vocally aggressive man which they dealt with without malice or discrimination.
They welcome anyone who would like to stand for just 30 minutes, in solidarity of the innocent lives being lost.
For those that want to join in unity, the vigil will take place between 10am-10:30am every Monday morning, at the cenotaph on the Market Square in Ripon.