IOZ has done a great job of reminding his readers that while we sit and wonder about Iran and how the U.S. government “condemns” the violence that is currently occurring in Iran’s streets, that the U.S. still is dropping bombs from manned and unmanned aircraft in various parts of the globe. These bombs kill guilty, innocent, whomever.

The recent “major” celebrity deaths have shown how absurd the dissemination of news is currently.

First, in terms of news coverage. Here at the Nappy Cat, Will has discussed the bizarre nature of entertainment and news very well. Even so, this problem is now two fold. First, rarely does the death of innocents from American bombs reach the peripheral conversations of the average American. Second, even when something significant actually is getting coverage, like the protests and violence in Iran, even that coverage is preempted by a celebrity death.

These recent developments just prove how right Will is. Americans care far less about the deaths of non-Americans than anything else. The line of nationalist/sectarian jingoism is strong. And no amount of cynicism (or realism as others say) takes away from me, what an absolute tragedy it is that utter lack of compassion. More cynicism does not take away from hypocrisy.

Consider that the recent celebrity deaths happened out of no ill will. No one or no group is in some war against Hollywood celebrities. However, it is our bombs that are killing people in the Middle East. And it is real courage that Iranian citizens are showing in confronting their government.

Moreover, what about the soldiers with which our government uses to engage these wars? The best tribute I’ve seen is on the News Hour with Jim Lehrer. At least they have some sense of humanity in paying tribute to our soldiers by listing who has died at the end of their show when the information becomes available. Otherwise, not a whisper of them. Support the troops, indeed.

In the end, here is the crux of the issue. News can travel fast by word of mouth – mainly by social networking sites. However, when you go on Facebook and the news that people are talking about is in regards to the deaths of Farrah Fawcett, Billy Mays, Bea Arthur, and Michael Jackson, and how tragic it all is – relative to no one talking about Iran – this says a lot about America’s world view, and why I am not surprised regarding the public’s view on foreign policy.

They just don’t care about it. So, how do we make a case to our fellow citizens make them care? How can we write, or talk, to our friends regarding these larger issues without sounding condescending? Who knows, maybe they need to be slapped over the head with a copy of The New Yorker. Which, by the way, I have no doubt now is probably writing about recent celebrity deaths as I finish this post.


[...] Yes, unless they’re family and with the exception of a few outstanding individuals, no American truly cares about the life of a non-American. And, why should we? Does an Italian value the life of an Iranian over that of an Italian? Does an Iranian value the life of an American over that of an Iranian? This is particularly acute when it’s Americans killing non-Americans. One dead Arab is one less dead American, hypothetically at least and likely at best. [...]

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