I have very little respect for human life. Or any life, for that matter. Do you? Do you know WHY you do? You know how easy it is to make a person? It's even fun. It isn't a very impressive achievement, however.
When I heard that the world trade centers collapsed, and over three thousand people were dead... I was nonchalant. Because, chances are, there wasn't a single valuable life (by my standards) in the buildings. And... yes, value is entirely in the eye of the beholder- my friends lives are extremely valuable to me, and in most cases I would give my own life to protect them. But that doesn't make them valuable, any more than my own life is valuable or the lives of three thousand American business men are valuable.
Stop and think about this particular case study. In New York City, over 5000 people die by gunshot wounds annually. Well shit, in 2001, only 3000 people died in New York City from planes crashing into buildings. So why were there parades for 9/11? Why were there countless movies, books, documentaries about it? "Oh, but those 3000 died all at once." Common sense is usually too much to hope for.
The other "hot" tradgedy of the decade has been the tsunamis in the Indian Ocean. Just under 100000 Asians dead over the course of 3 weeks. Well shucks, 200000 Iraqi civillians (mostly women, children, and the elderly) were murdered at bombsight by George W. Bush just last year. Why weren't we donating to unicef and Red Cross then?
:::Anecdote Injection::: Clap yourself on the back Canada, you donated more per capita for tsunami relief than ANY other country in the world. It's too bad that over a million of that went towards a foundation in Toronto complete with 1-800 help line devoted to helping TORONTONIANS to deal with the pain, anguish, strife, and trauma of seeing tsunami images on TV and the Internet. Ya, we're real crusaders here in Canada. Sucks for the orphaned kid in Thailand who won't get his aide package because your aunt Liz in Ottawa couldn't change the channel in time to avoid being grief-stricken.
I'm not belittling anyone that donated money, or was involved in the benefit put on in an effort to help out- in fact I'm quite impressed by this. But anyone that actually cried over the dead people in Asia and still havn't raised an eyebrow over the ethnic cleansing in Darfur, Sudan, where millions have been tortured and murdered (as opposed to a quick death by waves), you need to go and hang yourself in a forest or something.
Anways... I was going somewhere with all this crap...
When we lose people like Ghandi, Mother Teresa, Princess Diana, Kurt Cobain, Ray Charles, Martin Luther King, and Winston Churchill, I become regretful. These were people who changed the world, or at least my life. And if I had to send a Tsunami onto California to bring back Cobain, I wouldn't hesitate to press the earthquake button. I regret the industrial revolution, that for a hundred years we lost a hundred Mozarts and DeVincis, and at least 1 or 2 Jesuses and Ghandis. These were valuable lives.
Look at the way we mourn- if no one is mourning nearby, you will have to use your imagination. We never cry for the dead- we cry for ourselves. Hey, chico/a! A 5 year old was just raped and murdered in the time you've been browsing this forum! Huzzah! Are you sad? Tearing up a little, perhaps? WHY NOT YOU MONSTER?! A POOR, INNOCENT 5 YEAR OLD WAS JUST RAPED AND MURDERED! It's so saaaaaaaaaad. Not doing anything for you?
I'll hit you up with a little personal anecdote. I've got a big family, and I've been to a lot of funerals. A few of them, people have called "tragedies". An aquaintance of mine recently hung himself from a bridge. A girl I had partied with a few times recently passed away in a car accident. Another aquaintance (this one I actually have a lot of regret about, he would have been a 'valuable person'
died of a seizure two weeks ago. But I never felt any serious sense of loss, because I had very little social interaction with anyone in the coffins.
All the people who have died in my family (with the exception of one or two) I saw rarely at best. When I was 16, my cat died. I have never been sadder. Makes very little sense, no? It was just a cat, they have no complex emotions, you can't have a conversation with a cat or share with it a bottle of wine. But he was there everyday for 11 years, he always stayed by my side instinctively if I'd been having a shitty day- there was a strong solidarity. The point is that for the past million years, humans have been selfish creatures. It is inherant. We do not mourn for death, we mourn that we must go on living without our friends and family.
Something infinitely more important than life or death is choice. Without choice, everything else is worthless. If a woman in America in 2007 can't go to a doctor to have an abortion, why was she born? If someone living in prohibition can't have a drink, why have a throat. This is all melodrama of course, as we always have a choice. The woman can always buy a coathanger, the man can always drink mouthwash. The point is that we exist to choose.
The importance of choice is directly related to the unimportance of life. A brief look around and mayhap one in the mirror is enough to see that people waste their lives, and their choices. So why do they exist? The same reason they make lemon and orange Starburst- filler.
No one (used broadly) knows how to raise their fucking kids today, and it's obvious that the next generation is going to be a bunch of retards interspersed very sparingly by a reasonably intelligent person. It's become apparent to me that this world is gradually collapsing into international chaos, and I fear there will be no one capable enough to rebuild it.
Weeping for the future,