When The Boat Is Full…


The reporter who tweeted it out gets responses like “Why did you tweet this, there are more important things going on.” Yes. There are more important things going on than a privileged, safe woman kicking refugee children, running for their lives from atrocity. There are more important things to look at than the sickness of seeing a child as a cockroach to be stepped on… Not my problem.

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The anti-immigrant fervor rises in America, the never-ending fear and hatred of the “other” ends with presidential candidates fighting over who gets their picture taken with a bigot in Kentucky, while other bigots wave bigot flags and chant slack-jawed inanity at their favorite spicy-chicken-shilling TV preacher / politician. Isn’t there something more important to see, than Americans trying to push other Americans down and stomp on them? Not my problem.

Syrian children drown trying to escape mass murder by starvation, instituted by their own government, people do nothing, because it isn’t their problem. Isn’t there something more important to see, than some nameless, faceless, little body laying limp on the rocks, in some other place I don’t give a shit about? Not my problem.

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Some days the world is so heavy, and I think to myself… we’ve learned nothing…. nothing since 1830… 1864… 1964…. 1915…. 1933…. 1994 …. 1995…. and on and on…. nothing. There’s always something more important to stare vapidly at, while we stuff chemicals in our mouths and chew aimlessly…. like cows in a pasture, chewing chewing chewing staring staring staring… never wondering where those other cows went… And every place is full of the same cows, staring and chewing and staring…. Not my problem.

I’m afraid of the next horror. Some days I feel like I can see the outline of it… the horrible, atrocious shape of the creature taking form…. Some days I look at what’s happening around me and I feel like it’s so obvious what’s coming, right here in our back yard…. that maybe it’s inevitable… Maybe this is what humans are… other days I think we can evolve….

When I think of all these historical horrors, that all of the sensible modern people look at and say “Oh, that’s evil, genocide is evil.” But nobody connects those genocides with what happened before….. Before those genocides, all these smart, concerned people were having smart, concerned conversations about how “those others” were really straining the system, really costing us money, really living on the dole, really getting unfairly coddled with handouts that the hard working citizens were getting stuck with the bill for.

Do you think anyone in, say, Rwanda… ever looked back and thought, “Holy shit… that got out of hand…?” Or did everyone just point at everyone else, absolve themselves of responsibility with a hearty cry of “Not my problem?”

George Orwell said, in 1984:

If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever.

That’s not the picture of the future, though… It’s the picture of a drowned toddler on a rocky beach with some asshole playing Candy Crush in the background.

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