“We – even we here – hold the power and bear the responsibility.”
~ Abraham Lincoln
Every Christian who invests in the stock market using mutual funds has to take the good with the bad. In any given mutual fund there is a long list of companies, some of which support or fund causes that may be contrary to Christian principles.
It can be difficult to decide where to draw the line. I disagree with some of the practices of Wal-Mart, but I’m not going to get rid of a mutual fund I have just because .38% of the fund is in Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. I’m certain that I could also disagree with practices in some of the other companies that my mutual funds invest in, but my grievances with them are in areas of debatable principles.
Genocide is not a debatable principle.
If you are not yet aware of the ongoing crisis in Darfur, take a look at SaveDarfur.org for some basic facts regarding the government-funded slaughter of at least 400,000 Sudanese persons. If you own any mutual funds, there is a chance that you have investments in one or companies that maintain a business relationship with the government of Sudan.
American companies cannot legally operate in Sudan, but they can invest in foreign companies that operate in Sudan, including those companies that make a significant contribution to funding the genocide taking place there. Consequently, many individual investors are unknowingly supporting the slaughter of thousands of Sudanese people.
I checked out the four mutual funds we have using a screening tool created by the Sudan Divestment Taskforce, and found that two of them had significant investments in Schlumberger Ltd, a company that is still known to operate in Sudan, partially funding the Sudanese government with their taxes and business growth. We are taking steps to divest, and then reinvest in funds that do not include these companies.
The situation in Darfur is no less a horror than the Jewish holocaust in World War II. The number of lives lost are fewer, but the targeted killings are just as brutal.
Money talks if a government hungry for it sees it going away. If the militia don’t have funds, they can’t continue their killing rampage. This is our opportunity to take action.