Life is life…..? Sensitive matter, another case

One murder makes a villain. Millions a hero. Numbers sanctify. – Charlie Chaplin

In last couple of weeks, we had no single day when we did not hear shocking news. One is about a U.S. journalist beheaded by Islamic State in Syria, another is the conflict between Israel and Hamas. According to some sources, more than 2,000 people have been killed in Gaza in last couple of months. OK, now, let’s do the math. Suppose every human being’s life is equally respected. Then, the killing in Gaza is more than 2,000 times seriously treated than killing a U.S. citizen in Syria. Is it? Obviously no. Why? WHy?? WHY???

I even don’t know the difference, or in another word the “border”, between murder and assassination.

I know. This is a sensitive matter, like the one I described in an old post.

There seem no rationally rational argument. Everything is subjective and relative. For a typical but different example, many people, mostly the Westerners, think that a whale or a dolphin’s life is way heavier than that of a “cow” (whether it is male or female), of a pig, or of a chicken. It is obvious for them, but ridiculous for me. It is subjective.

I even hope that we are in transition right now. I still remember a weird feeling I had in my childhood when I watched TV news reporting a tragedy, such as train crash or airplane accident, in which many people ware killed. Reporters typically said “被害者に政治家などの要人は含まれておりません (no important figures such as politicians are included in the casualties)”. WHAT? What the hell do you mean by “important figures”??? Now they don’t make such a biased report; people have changed.

Another unforgettable comment in my childhood was heard in a social studies class in my junior high-school. The teacher was talking about the changes in social structures and political systems, and if I remember correctly, he said like “political systems in the world had changed for the better. But now there are two different major systems and we cannot tell which is better: capitalism and socialism. Both are better than old ones and seem optimal.” Some years later, many socialistic nations have turned into capitalistic ones. Is it a change for the better? If I trust the first half of the teacher’s argument, it is. People have changed.

If people keep changing, the notion of the “equality of life” may change. I mean, it will change “for the better”. Some may argue that it “should change”.

OK, this is it for sensitive matters.

August 22, 2014Permalink