[Marxism] 12,000 dead... and its not news!
elishastephens at hotmail.com
Mon Jul 3 10:10:59 MDT 2006
This editorial from Granma Internacional deserves to be read widely
IF four buildings - four twin towers for example - full of boys and girls,
killing 12,000 were destroyed, surely it would not occur to anyone to argue
against that terrible news being the lead story on all news broadcasts, all
No one, on any editorial board, or in any radio or television studio, would
object if the news of those 12,000 dead children dominated all the headlines
and columns, opinions and reports, photos and testimonies.
No public figure would miss the opportunity to refer to such a dramatic
event and to proclaim that a similar disaster must never happen again.
If an earthquake hit a country or a tsunami unexpectedly slammed into a
coastline killing 12,000 children, no one in the media would dare suggest
that such a terrible disaster should yield the spotlight to a soccer game,
for example, or the illness of a popular singer. No police chief or
religious leader in the world would fail to display his or her dismay over
the incident, and every government or humanitarian aid agency would mobilize
If a terrorist gang kidnapped 12,000 children and threatened to execute the
hostages if their demands were not met within 24 hours, every plaza in the
world would be full of people clamoring for the release of the victims, not
one person would be indifferent to the possible fate of these children.
Nevertheless, every day, each time we wake up, 12,000 more children have
died. Not from the tsunami that didn't happen yesterday, or from the tower
that didn't collapse, or from the terrorist gang that doesn't exist; these
12,000 children have died of starvation, of simple and wretched starvation.
And starvation and its miserable consequences are not news.
Audiences would get tired --says the media director-- of a fixed eight
columns, every day, in which the only variable would be the increasing
There is no way that these 12,000 dead would merit a brief headline, a
lamenting feature, or even a summary in the section "Strange World."
Neither does the opportunity exist to commemorate anniversaries because
every day the deaths and their causes reoccur, so every day is both a
tragedy and an anniversary of the same misfortune.
Twelve thousand boys and girls who have died between breakfast and dinner,
between the morning paper and the evening news.
And we are only talking about starvation. There are many other buildings
that fall every day for related reasons: tsunamis of illnesses for which
vaccines can not be acquired, earthquakes that demolish schools and
playgrounds, terrorist bands that enrich themselves by exploiting child
labor and prostitution.
And we are only talking about children.
But not one plaza has filled with people to condemn a crime that does not
cease being a crime because of its repetition, neither has any one of the
media outlets that have covered similar attacks, interrupted its regular
programming to give "live and direct", up to the minute on the spot coverage
with a correspondent adjusting the totals of dead and disappeared and
interviewing neighbors, before the broadcast turns back to the studios and
yields to another barrage of commercials.
According to a United Nations report, "every seven seconds a child dies from
starvation." About 12,000 per day.
The press would need several special editions or have to add 60 more pages
to each edition in order to superficially report the names, which they have;
their faces, which are real; and the agonized and despairing families of
those 12,000 cadavers who have no mourners nor headlines, no history, for
whom no one organizes anniversary masses or tributes. These 12,000 little
ones dead each day at the hands of a rotten economic order sold to us as
progress, whose laws protect the solidity of its immune building, and which
terrorizes via its monetary gangs the deposed government of life.
Left I on the News
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