the limits of empathy

It's weird, isn't it, to be blogging about our own little lives, while at this very moment, people are suffering on an almost imaginable scale?

Of course, people were suffering yesterday, in Darfur, in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in... take your pick. Any of our neighbors or friends, or we ourselves, might be enduring a personal tragedy that eclipses all else. But when a disaster occurs on this scale, the numbers so huge, too numbing to truly take in, how do we process it? What does it mean to say more than 40,000 humans are dead, millions more at risk for disease, millions homeless? We'll write checks, shake our heads, some of us will shed tears. Is there more?

* * * *

R.I.P. Susan Sontag. A great thinker and writer is gone.


Rognar said...

This piece is from a CBC commentator, Rex Murphy, who has a knack for shining a light on Canadian complacency.


Anonymous said...

I hope you don't mind but I stole your post and put it on my LJ blog. Thnak you Laura for reminding us.


laura k said...

I'm honored, Nick. I'll check out the post on your LJ.

Rob: excellent column, thank you.