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~(R U 2)~

Author: Doug Lewis    (all articles by this author)
Published on: November 30, 2000

From the Social Conscience series - lest we forget

Reference: "Brain Wave Diary" (11/11/00)

Reduced to tears

A Reuter's BUSINESS headline grabbed me today, by the heart and with both gnarly hands and squeezed - HARD!

The headline alluded to the ALARM registered by an INSURANCE company that one individual was dying of the AIDS virus per minute in South Africa. That is sixty per hour, or 521,280 persons a year.

My mind immediately associated with the pain, suffering, terror and horror of this horrendous fact.

Moments later, I puzzled why this report of ABSOLUTE human tragedy and horror was JUST an alarm from an insurance company? If the headline had read, "The kill rate of a conflict somewhere in the world had a rate of one person per minute", I am sure it would NOT have originated as an alarmed insurance company statement flying by on the daily business ticker. Many other examples abound but this one raised a flag!

Have we become so callous, cynical, hardened and desensitized that horrendous human suffering has been reduced to a commercial prospect? Have we accepted that each individual is no more than a jot, one iota of someone's bottom line and economic projection?

Is THIS the new reality!

You and I, now but an inventoried product, an automaton of consumerism on the buying side of life's equation? A demographic finger to be counted on to click a banner ad. A lost revenue opportunity or a "payout" liability if we expire.

What happened to concern for the sake of it? Is this possible?

How else could it be explained that an announcement of such enormous gravity is flashed on the display screen of life carrying a commercial connotation? How could the context be such that it smacks of lost market share, premium or insurance payment "blow out" or some other bothersome economic trend?

How else could it be?

Remember when someone in your community got sick or hurt and it was news. Remember the doctor who rushed to your home in time of need? Remember the nurse that gave compassion or the teacher who picked you up and checked your scrape? You remember when, if some personal item was stolen, or a car was broken into - it was noteworthy and pursued? Remember when a "fight off the school bus" was a huge local scandal and commanded attention.

Remember when you could go tell someone if you saw a travesty unfold?

I do, I remember, it was not THAT long ago! I liked the fact at the time, it felt like things and folks mattered and someone, somewhere cared.

Have we devolved to a point of irrelevance? What have we been reduced to?

I am reduced to tears! I need to go and tell someone about something RIGHT NOW.

How about you?

Doug aKa UNIT UR2


Originally published in Project X Newsletter #49

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