Image: Heronymus Bosch, Hell, Courtesy of Radio Netherlands
As Canadians mark Holocaust Education Week, it is a sobering thought to realize that the genocide in Darfur has lasted longer than the Holocaust itself. Mia Farrow, Cycles of Violence, Toronto Star, 11-4-09
Climate change denial is spreading like a contagious disease It exists in a sphere that cannot be reached by evidence or reasoned argument; any attempt to draw attention to scientific findings is greeted with furious invective. This sphere is expanding with astonishing speed. George Monbiot, Climate Change Deniers Are Not Skeptics - They're Suckers, Guardian, 11-5-09
The Adversary is Not an Ideology or a Demographic, It is at its Most Innocent, a Paralyzing Fear, at its most Disappointing, an appalling Apathy, & at its Worst, a vicious Sociopathy
Ha! Fooled you? I have noticed that when "Darfur" or "Climate" are in the headline, the number of hits for a new post drops off typically by half from the average number of hits if something like "Cheney" or "Jefferson" or "Healthcare" were in the headline.
Others, whose words and deeds I respect, are asking similar questions.
Mia Farrow is an impeccable source that Words of Power often references in regard to the Crisis in Darfur.
In an op-ed for the Toronto Star, posted during her recent visit to support the work of two Canadian Jewish organizations involved in Darfur activism, Farrow puts Darfur in its proper context, and by so doing delivers one answer -- apathy. Indeed, an apathy that "astonished" Elie Wiesel, Nobel Peace Prize winning Holocaust survivor then and now.
As Canadians mark Holocaust Education Week, it is a sobering thought to realize that the genocide in Darfur has lasted longer than the Holocaust itself. And it continues unabated.
The post-World War II cry of "Never Again" has tragically become "Again and Again." But in today's wired world, we cannot retreat behind claims that we don't know what is happening. ...
As Elie Wiesel wrote in amazement about the Holocaust: "The victims perished not only because of the killers, but also because of the apathy of the bystanders. What astonished us after the torment, after the tempest, was not that so many killers killed so many victims, but that so few cared about us at all." Mia Farrow, Cycles of Violence, Toronto Star, 11-4-09
The provocative and indomitable George Monbiot is a source that Words of Power frequently references in regard to the Climate Crisis.
In a recent column for the Guardian, in which Monbiot explores the motivations of global warming deniers and also the apparent rise in their number, he cites fear as the hidden engine of such phenomena.
A study by the website Desmogblog shows that the number of internet pages proposing that man-made global warming is a hoax or a lie more than doubled last year ... On Amazon.co.uk, books championing climate change denial are currently ranked at 1, 2, 4, 5, 7 and 8 in the global warming category. Never mind that they've been torn to shreds by scientists and reviewers, they are beating the scientific books by miles. What is going on? ...
Such beliefs seem to be strongly influenced by age. The Pew report found that people over 65 are much more likely than the rest of the population to deny that there is solid evidence that the earth is warming, that it's caused by humans, or that it's a serious problem ...
A recent paper by the biologist Janis L Dickinson, published in the journal Ecology and Society, proposes that constant news and discussion about global warming makes it difficult to repress thoughts of death, and that people might respond to the terrifying prospect of climate breakdown in ways that strengthen their character armour but diminish our chances of survival ... could it be that the rapid growth of climate change denial over the last two years is actually a response to the hardening of scientific evidence? If so, how the hell do we confront it? George Monbiot, Climate Change Deniers Are Not Skeptics - They're Suckers, Guardian, 11-5-09
This is my eighty second post on Darfur and my one hundred seventy fifth post on the Climate Crisis. These posts have been not only an attempt to provide context and continuity, as well as appropriate emphasis, on these stories, but also to find new language (i.e., new metaphors, new arguments, new analogies) and search for the most efficient triggers (e.g., spiritual, psychological and economic) with which to reach more and more people. It is my shaman's drum.
And yes, what we do battle with (whether over Darfur, or the Climate Crisis, or health care reform) is not an ideology or a demographic, it is fear, apathy and illness deep within the human psyche.
I will continue to gaze into the fire and tell you what I see.
I will continue to beat this drum.
Together, our minds will impact the collective mind.
For the Words of Power Climate Crisis Updates Archive, click here.
If you have not already joined the Alliance for Climate Protection, Al Gore and I urge you to do so. Click here.
As always, I encourage you to follow events in Darfur on Mia Farrow's site, it is the real-time journal of a humanitarian at work; the content is compelling, insightful and fiercely independent.
For an archive of Words of Power posts on the Crisis in Darfur, click here.
Richard Power's Left-Handed Security: Overcoming Fear, Greed & Ignorance in This Era of Global Crisis is available now! Click here for more information.
Mia Farrow, Darfur, Climate Crisis, George Monbiot, Elie Wiesel