BY FLO JOHNSTON, The Durham News
Experts in theology, religion and human rights will gather in Durham March 25-26 to discuss the use of torture in the U.S. and abroad and to prepare participants for anti-torture advocacy within their own communities.
“Toward a Moral Consensus Against Torture: A Gathering of students, Clergy, People of Conscience and People of Faith” is open to the public and will take place at Duke Divinity School and First Presbyterian Church in Durham.
Registration fee is $35 for the public and $10 for students. To register by the March 18 deadline and for a complete schedule of events, visit www.divinity.duke.edu/moral-consensus-against-torture.
The conference is sponsored by the National Religious Campaign Against Torture, the Duke Human Rights Center and the N.C. Council of Churches.
“This is not an academic debate, but part of a national effort toward a moral consensus: Torture is always wrong, torture does not make ‘us’ safer and we need concrete tactics to refuse the climate of fear and compliance,” said Amy Laura Hall, conference coordinator and associate professor of Christian ethics at Duke Divinity School.
The conference will feature a diverse group of speakers and panelists, including George Hunsinger, professor of systematic theology at Princeton Theological Seminary and founder of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. Also participating will be Ingrid Mattson, director of the Macdonald Center for the study of Islam and Christian-Muslim relations at Hartford Seminary and immediate past president of the Islamic Society of North America.
Panelists from Duke include religion professor Kalman Bland, Muslim chaplain Abdullah Antepli and Robin Kirk, executive director of Duke Human Rights Center. They will discuss interfaith views on torture and alleged torture in the U.S. Prison System and abroad.