Tuesday, October 02, 2007
I talk a lot of shit about the US government and about religion, but there are times when I must stop and say that while I am not happy about the direction our country is heading, things are still very good around here. Burma on the other hand is in a very bad place right now. As bad a Guantanamo is at least the captives are alive, well most of them. There is a report of 200 monks being arrested, there is another local source saying that only ten of the monks survived the arrest. A 95% mortality rate and its simply being referred to as an arrest. So while I still see many members of the US government wishing they could crush the skulls of those who oppose them, they still do not have the power to do that, at least not openly. As for the religious aspect, well I might not mind the religious folks if they behaved like these monks who are out in the streets protesting against an oppressive regime as opposed to the fundies around here who seem angry that we don't have an oppressive enough regime. The Buddhist monks have often been the example of what religion is meant to be. I realize this may seem like a rather callous look at an ongoing atrocity and it is, but the truth is I've never been very good at outpouring empathy towards folks thousands of miles away. I could fake it but whats the point? This is the exact sort of situation that the U.N. is meant to handle. The World must let the governments of the world know that this is not acceptable. We cannot force every nation onto a level playing field but there are some actions which simply cannot be tolerated in the modern era. I also see this as a surprisingly good example of the power of the internet and alternative media. I would not have thought of Burma as being particularly on board with such technologies but this also shows the power of the few when they can captivate the attention of the many.