Monday, June 20, 2016

The Value of Life

Vasu Reddy from Chicago

No one gets used to death.  For all living beings death is final and comes once.  However we see life and how it comes to fruition, death also is a given phenomenon for all living beings.  We have a normal, rather an average life span as human beings, except when death comes accidentally or inflicted.  As we (humans) are more evolved and obviously more intelligent of all living species on earth, we constantly look for longer life.  Mythology and history continues to be fascinated with eternal life, but so far the life span and its limitations have not been conquered by human intelligence.  We continue to have a set life span, unless we mess with it.

Human population has been growing exponentially, and human’s also destroying earth’s resources, and eliminating other living beings at a rapid pace.  From the beginning of time man has been brutal to every other living being and other elements on earth and as time goes by we have become more brutal in our ways.  We keep killing with indiscrimination and keep finding ways to justify the killing.

The two world wars in the early part of 1900’s have not really made is fearful our own extinction.  Many of the countries continue to spend most of their annual budgets on defense and military, while the vast portion of human race survives on very little.  The money spent on weapons outweighs spending on education, medicine and nutrition. While we continue to invest more and more on killing machines, we also continue to come-up with many new and fancy reasons to kill.

Drugs and guns have evolved into a business with international foot print over the last 100 years.  They both go hand in hand.  The drug menace, despite the harm and suffering caused to humans, continues to plague people and doesn’t seem to dampen the use despite the well documented and well publicized harm.  For reasons only valid to the users, the habits outweigh solutions to human issues.

Using guns and explosives has become a common place in the name of religion.  The destructive weapons are available all over the world, and in abundance and at affordable price, and adding to the violence is home grown fanaticism.  Attacking unsuspecting public places has now become a common place all over the world.  Suicide bombers, automatic weapons, even old fashioned knifes are being used to kill, most times in the name of religion.  While to right to bear arms has been well represented politically as a human right, the availability of arms is not being represented for self-defense, rather to kill indiscriminately in a civilized society.  It has also become common place for the perpetrators during the killing or right after to pledge allegiance to some group or someone and inflict the killings on a civilized society.  During or immediately following the carnage, the social media and TV latch on to the coverage as a global event.  Although the loss of life is irreplaceable the continuous coverage along with (almost all the time) the death of the killer is publicized to no end.  At the end of each of these killing events, the victims and the killer; all dead and their families start to grieve and also try to find answers to why the killing?

Despite the continued and almost regular killings, noting gets resolved and nothing is achieved, except the few minutes of coverage and spreading more hatred.  The part we don’t even know is that each of these killer’s pledging support to some cause really believe in what they are pledging their support to, or they are looking for a few minutes of fame.

Logically human beings respect and like life.  All of us would like a full life, with families and friends and certainly look forward to tomorrow with hope.  Just a few find comfort in the name of something (religion, freedom, cause or whatever their choice) to kill indiscriminately.  Lately we also see organized groups waging religious war on civilians, via occupation and dismantling civilian structures and populations.  While the world is by and large is governed by respect to boundaries, the latest example of occupation in Iraq and Syria certainly defies the respect for internationally acceptable laws.  How does this happen in today’s world?  Each nation has defined boundaries and their own form of government.  It is incredible to see the sudden and prolonged occupation of sovereign territories with a group of people who have organized under a religious philosophy that doesn’t concur with anyone else.

Atrocities, killings, kidnappings and parallel laws are being forced on the minimal population that is still in the territory.  All this was done in just a few months and a few thousand guys from around the world.  While the tragedy of forced occupation has killed, displaced and destroyed life and property, the world’s power has not been able to stop the carnage.  The super powers of the world with the mightiest of armies and powerful weapons (with 100’s of billions invested in creating) have not been able to eliminate the threat/s.  What is more appalling is that the same small group that defying the global powers is advocating and conducting uninhibited acts of terror around the world and on civilian population.

It is certainly wasted investment in trillions if the world’s powerful weapons can’t reclaim territory (already decimated) from a small group of fanatics.  The R&D, the technologies, the weapons, the armies, the resources and all the investments in defense technologies is nothing but wasted dollars.

Technology and communications are also playing a role in advocating the terror networks, promoting terror as a way of life (“sometimes promising heaven”).  Communications networks are freely advocating extreme acts to hurt and kill others, all unabated.  The social media propaganda is unstoppable.  We don’t need to figure out that WWW is all of a sudden a free medium for terror propaganda, and nothing can control them.  There is also no controlling the terror networks trade, funding, financing and recruiting.  While we see law abiding population being monitored and subjected to global and local laws and regulations in communications, conduct, banking and other applicable laws, the very few lawless are having an open world in which they can communicate with anyone, purchase anything they want, destroy and pillage at will and let their terror network function globally without restrictions.

We hear daily that the nations are trying to stop the terror networks, but we don’t hear the successful end to them.  We only hear of happening terror and constant threats.  If we were smart enough to create the WWW, why can’t the checks and balances is put in place with equal ease?  Perhaps we should focus on not just building networks, but also network checks, not just build roads, but also road blocks.

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