Friday, April 20, 2007

Whose Life Matters Most to the Media

In a recent Christian Science Monitor article, Sam Dagher writes about returning to a Baghdad market one day after 135 Iraqis were murdered:

The most striking image, for me, was the old lady. She was wrapped in a black abaya, wandering through the wreckage of charred buses and mangled vehicles. She kept repeating: "This is doomsday. God is greatest."

This has been a week of death - 32 innocents in Blacksburg, Virginia - 135 innocents in Baghdad.
But the world was focused on the 32 - almost ignoring the 135.
Violent death is unexpected on a university campus.
Violent death is a fact of life in Baghdad.

Have we become immune to violence unless it's dropped on our doorstep?
Why are the deaths at Virginia Tech more worthy of media attention than the one hundred more deaths half a world away? Are we that immune to the destruction we have created under the guise of spreading democracy that we can bypass 135 bodies while we go to memorials for 32?

I grieve for the families who lost loved ones at Virginia Tech - but also for the Iraqi families who lose loved ones daily. Can we not take a moment of silence for all of them - every innocent death?

Maybe the old lady in the black abaya was right - it is Doomsday.


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