My brother in Tokyo spotted this sign for the quake victims … 東北の皆様がんばってください。Kind of means To all people in Tohoku do your best (or don’t give up).

We in the west, in our safe havens, greedily soak up the news of disasters in far away places.  It’s probably not conscious but we are behaving a little like the people in George Orwell’s 1984.  I remember first reading the book in around 1974 and being surprised at the portrayal of characters enjoying movies about the horrors and miseries of others.  Now I look at myself and see that it has come to pass.

Each new disaster brings a flood of frenzied media coverage, interest and voyeurism.  But once it’s old news, we don’t think that much about the people involved.  Perhaps there will be a longer human interest piece on a current affairs show here and there, but largely we ignore the ongoing human crisis.  I wonder what that says about the western wealthy nations?  Are we doing our bit?

.. 🙁 ..