Sunday, April 26, 2009

Is it OK to sit and do Nothing?

I'm not sure that it's okay to sit and do nothing. I must first decide what that means. When I come home from work, I turn on the radio and listen to the tidbits of information about the daily grind. What is called 'news'. The 30 seconds of headlines, repeated every half-hour don't inform me particularly, they pique my interest, but just enough to make me wonder about the horrors of what other people are facing, while I concern myself with what I'm going to make for dinner at that moment, and do I have all the ingredients. Those are the real concerns.
Is my food organic?
Was it grown locally?
Who is not recycling?
Who is polluting?
Am I happy in my chosen job?
God I hate my roommate.
God I am tired.
I have to call this person back and I was suppose to do it two days ago.

Western Media outlets report British Prime Minister and French Foreign Minister and a number of other diplomats, summarily condemn a new law passed in Afganistan by the Hamid Karzai government. Those noble politicians, standing up for the rights of women in Afghanistan, by threatening all manner of aid to be withdrawn until the law is repealed. Is the law allowing rape within marriage repealed? Who knows, because the following day, I learn about Obama's decision to release memos of the Bush government concerning the wording of what is deemed to be torture. THAT'S A BIG HEADLINE. The Bush administration condoning and actively participating in the torture of prisoners of war, or anyone who is suspected of being a terrorist. Well, that's a big deal. Calling into question our sense of morality, that's shocking. We must learn about this, we must read all we can. It's being reported by CNN, CBS, ABC, MSNBC, FOX, AP, Reuters, CBC, BBC, and a dozen more international publications. Did you hear about this: Women being raped by their husbands, beaten to death by their brothers and male family members for disrespecting the family honour, women politicians, activists, human rights lawyers, women who stand up for themselves are assassinated, hanged, beaten, gang-raped regularly. Did it make the six o'clock news? No, but I heard about the Obama administration replacing the CEO of GM. God, I feel informed. Besides, we're doing our part in Afghanistan. What about all the Canadian soldiers dying there, fighting against the Taliban, helping to restructure Afganistan. I should be proud to be Canadian. I'm behind the troops, fighting the evil Taliban and they are a fairly nasty bunch putting it mildly. A really twisted fanatical, extremist, power-hungry regime. Our troops are making a difference over there. It's true, we are working with the Karzai government, but. BUT WHAT. Where's the but? Yes, his brother is reported to be one of the largest opium smugglers in the country, but. HUH? Well, it's you know 9 thousand miles away. You must understand the context of laws in that country, of their culture, of their traditions. Hmm, you have a point. I musn't judge the whole government and culture by this new law. I should concern myself with what's going on around me, in my city, in my culture, with my own people.
Worry about the weather. Talk about the Olympics. Wonder about the conditions at Cypress. Concern yourself with the recession. Will the Canucks win the Stanley Cup?
A woman was gang-raped regularly for over a year, until she had a child...
Go make a sandwich, have a cup of tea, download some music, be thankful you have a job.


At May 2, 2009 at 10:47 PM, Blogger Silke said...

This is really well written.

At May 4, 2009 at 12:54 PM, Blogger Alina said...

When someone sticks a photo album right before your nose, it's hard to look past. Sometimes it's good to use our heads and memorize the images of reality we need to focus on and the album will move out a bit towards an arm's length and our view is expanded...

At May 12, 2009 at 6:51 AM, Blogger spacemaurader said...

If your house is a mess, and I mean a pathological mess; papers piled to the ceiling, dirty clothes taking up more room than furniture would, rotting food, mildew on the walls - overwhelming disaster - what do you do about it? You have a few options. Arson is the quick and dirty way but then you are left homeless and your destructive solution might spread to innocent neighbors tidy homes. You can pick one spot and just start there; clean the area around the front door so the door can open all the way to let a little fresh air in, start there and move in small steps never taking in the whole disheartening picture until you have finally, finally cleaned up your mess. Or you can gather together an army of willing souls (who may all have differing opinions on how it should be done) to attack that disaster and slough your home of all it's debris fast with many arms. All these solutions work. We need only decide which we can live with, roll up our sleeves and just do it.


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