Day Five: Hunger-Strike To Say #TakeItBackJack

Hi, this is Pieter Friedrich. I’m now on my fifth day of of hunger-strike to protest a $2.5 million donation made by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to Sewa International USA, a nonprofit linked to the RSS, which is a violent Hindu nationalist paramilitary that is pushing a fascist agenda in India.

But my protest is also for myself as well as for you — my friends, supporters, and allies.

One of my heroes, the martyred Punjabi human rights defender Jaswant Singh Khalra, once told this story:

“There is a fable that when the Sun was setting for the first time, light was decreasing and the signs of darkness were appearing…. Darkness set its foot on the earth. But somewhere, far away, in some hut, one little lamp lifted its head and proclaimed: ‘I challenge the darkness. If nothing else, then at least around myself, I will not let it settle. Around myself I will establish light.’ And, watching that one lamp, in other huts, other lamps arose. And the world was amazed that these lamps stopped darkness from expanding, so that people could see.”

The struggle against authoritarianism, totalitarianism, and fascism is long and exhausting and crucial to the survival of our human race. It will fail without unwavering dedication, relentless and obsessive devotion to love, and sacrifice.

What are you willing to sacrifice? What are you willing to give up? What pain are you willing to endure?

Around myself, I will try to establish light. Will you?

Please don’t let this issue die with me. Keep the chain going. Please consider giving up one meal — or even fasting for a day — to join me in saying, “Take it back, Jack.”

Challenge the darkness.

Friedrich is a freelance journalist and analyst of South Asian affairs. Learn more about him at