A lesser pain?

The horrific events of last week clearly point to one thing — our forefathers (yes the very same who defined the rights of people depending on which home they were born into) got it right — there seem to be some lesser people in this world.

On Monday, April 15, two separate incidents took place on two different continents. People died. Families were left in shock. Yet, only one got the kind of coverage that both deserved.

The incidents relate to bombing in Boston, US (Big Brother), and Iraq, a Muslim nation somewhere in the Middle East, important only because it holds oil reserves deemed crucial by the ‘developed’ world.

On that fateful Monday, a bombing at the Boston marathon took three innocent lives, injuring at least 180. The same day a series of bombings across Iraq killed at least 30 people (one report even said 55) and injured many more.

Within hours of the Boston attack comments started trickling in on social media — of how a certain religious group was the bane of earth, how they are killing people, how cruel they are. Not surprisingly, most of these came from citizens of a particular nation, who were either blissfully ignorant of what happened outside the borders of their own country or just didn’t care. The second possibility is painfully scary, the first gut-wrenchingly sad.

The news, too, I am afraid, was skewed in the coverage it gave these human tragedies. Or maybe I was just watching the wrong channels.

Even the events, during which these lives were lost, seem to be like the set-up of a macabre. While on the one hand Bostonians were assembled for a celebratory marathon run, Iraqis were looking ahead at the local polls. One can only imagine the importance of such an event for the people of a country that had been reeling under the effects of dictatorship for a good part of the last century.

Within all the venomous attacks following the Boston bombing that I saw on Facebook, one picture tore my heart — two burqa-clad women holding a handwritten poster saying “To Boston from Kabul, with love.” They sent sympathies for an agony they know only too well. I saw much less sympathy from the other educated, well-developed beings.

Indeed, it looks like there are some lesser people in this world.

(This blog first appeared on Business Line Blogs. http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/blogs/blog-aeshadatta/a-lesser-pain/article4636725.ece)

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