Thursday, March 5, 2009

We're all in this together

When I was at uni, there was a terrorist attack in Indonesia.

Not the sort that changes the world, but one in which people died, and it was significant if for no other reason but that.

The university sent an email out to all students saying that a certain number of people had died, but fortunately, no Australians were among the dead.

A lot of people, students and teachers alike, were angry about this, but it's a common attitude in the face of accidents and disasters. We are ok and sod the others.

It's a displaced sense of patriotism that skews the value of human life.

Even leading on from this, watching the SBS World News you can see the tragedies that occur around the world every single day that don't stand a chance of being reported on the six o'clock commercial news.

The sort that make you thankful for the life you have and the country you live in.

Why isn't it reported? Because it happened so far away, in a poor country where English is not the first language. It doesn't matter that 300 people died. Ben Cousins takes drugs. Ben Cousins had a coffee in Leederville. Ben Cousins flew to Melbourne.

In light of the attack in Pakistan, a similar attitude has emerged, this time not in a patriotic sense, but an elitest sense.

The terrorists struck but the cricketers survived*. Phew. The end.

I am as happy as anyone that the Sri Lankan cricket team and their entourage were not killed in this awful attack.

But it bothers me that in the media this sentiment largely outweighs the tragedy at the lives that were lost, even if it was in the line of duty. And this doesn't help the poor bus driver.

Sure, analyse the consequences for our sport. Validate your point of view on the future of cricket in the region. But don't let the loss of life pale into insignificance because of who was and wasn't killed. Rome is not worth one good man's life.

Maybe I'm just naive to think we should all be equal. Australian, Indonesian, cricketer, bus driver.

*Six police officers died protecting them, and two civilians.

7 comments:

John Nebauer said...

My thoughts exactly - extremely well written :)

12th Man said...

/* Maybe I'm just naive to think we should all be equal */

You've said this yourself Miss Field. You think you are NAIVE enough to consider yourself equal to a bus driver in a third world country.

We have different races and religions in this world. The feeling of superiority is with every race in the world. North Indians (that does not include me) and Pakistanis are from the same race and have the same genetic make-up. But they are divided by religion.

Some people in India were laughing when the attacks in Lahore took place and some Pakistani's would have been happy for what happened in Mumbai. Where is the value for human life? Then comes the equality of all humans.

Miss Field said...

Thank you John.

No 12th Man, that's not what I mean. I mean that perhaps it is naive to be idealistic.

Rob said...

Well written MF.

©hina said...

No MF,
it is not naive to be idealistic.
The world needs idealists who are not scared to speak out.

The day there will be none -
it will be a world without ideals
a world in perpetual darkness.

Wicket Maiden said...

Well said.

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