Posted by: nastylittletruths | March 17, 2011

Not A Movie…

While having my morning coffee last Friday, as is my routine, I was scanning Google News and saw the banner headline about the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The link led me to one of the first videos that everyone saw as a rolling mass of blackish water clearing everything in its path and nothing prepares you for something like that – not even after 100 disaster movies – because it’s real.

Since then it has been a constant scanning of the latest news as the threat of a nuclear disaster seems to be overshadowing what was a natural one. One news story mentioned how overwhelmed rescue workers were when 2,000+ bodies came in with the tide; seeing nothing where villages used to be and yet still stunned by the stoicism of the Japanese people.

This has, for me, been a defining moment. While we bitch and gripe about everything (we do have to bitch and gripe about some things) and if that wasn’t enough, former citizens who have abandoned TnT for greener pastures also bitching and griping about things that no longer concern them, we see a people who are still in shock and bracing for more lining up peacefully for miles to get fuel and also in makeshift stores where they are told they are limited in buying only five items…

No riots, no complaining even in freezing weather with no power to keep them warm. Here is a people then that knows what civility is all about and what is required to nurture it. I’ve said it many times that civility in humans is but a veneer that is easily stripped off depending on the situation. The affected prefectures in Japan – a developed country – have in some ways been knocked back close to the stone age as the people, accustomed to the trappings of civilisation, have to learn how to do without – hopefully in the short term.

So before I make a pitch for you to donate some money to the International Federation of the Red Cross to assist in efforts in Japan, remember that something like this can happen here too. (Aren’t you amazed that every single time there is a disaster elsewhere in the world, the poll on all the TV stations always ask if we think that TnT is prepared for a disaster knowing full well that we are not?)

In our case we may be rioting in the streets and looting for basic necessities, but the international community will come to our aid and people will also have to donate monies to assist.


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