Friday, December 31, 2004

How fragile life is

I was in a taxi last night and I got to talking with the driver about the curetn disaster and aid crisis in South Asia. The taxi driver came out with a comment to the effect of 'It's really brought it home to us because of the amount of holidaymakers out there at the time' . That got me thinking, why is it that we need to see white people in distress to feel true empathy. Perhaps I'm too much of a left-wing liberal hippy, and whilst I am very sorry for any losses that any families have had due to the quake, they were holidaymakers who coud afford to be on the other side of the world and living it up. Whereas all the people in Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia the Phillipines and all the others who have lost families, homes, incomes, crops water supplies etc etc.
And yet we need to see the human story of the terror that holidaymakers felt to get the impact of the tragedy. How selfish is that? It appears that the everyman on the street couldn't really feel the same about the whole tragedy just because someone of different skintone is suffering. And just coming out in the news today s the possible loss of soem of the most primitive/tribal cultures on the planet as the wave swept over the Andaman islands in the Indian ocean. These people still live an aboriginal lifestyle, when the tsunami struck they had no emergency services coming to their aid, no international aid going straight to them. The human world may have lost one of the links to its past with the loss of these tribes, and think thats a tragedy that really needs to be reported.

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