Black Day…Black Friday…GREED!

greedThere are times in life when human greed, avarice, stupidity, and crude savagery hit our screens with an impact that leaves us, or should leave us, with a degree of shame and disgust at our fellow man and woman that we can barely put into words

What is even more mortifying is when we put such times and incidents alongside real human suffering and poverty, as it shows us all to graphically how low we stoop as a species, and how disgraceful our actions can be.

This post is about two such incidents, and I have no hesitation in putting them side by side. Why so, because, in both cases, I think, as  a species, we should be ashamed of ourselves, and we should take a very long sober look at how we behave, and what values we promote or desire.

First Black Friday; that repulsive free for all where greed for “things” overwhelms common courtesy, and where, by any standards I can think of, we descend deep into the mire.

Not too sure what I mean, see the video below, It is called, by the way, “Best of 2012 BLACK FRIDAY Fights-all major fights included”

Now a different scene, filmed in East Java, Indonesia

Spot the difference? See what I mean?

As a species we pride ourselves on our intelligence, care and compassion, moral stance and principled behaviour, and our civilised position when nit comes to fairness and common decency, but how can we possibly hold such positions when we see such videos as these.

In both video’s we see humanity in the raw, as in both cases we see individuals operating under appalling conditions, desperately trying to obtain something which will satisfy a need or desire which is uppermost in their minds; but there is  a terrible distinction between the two.

The first video is in America, and the same scenes can now be seen in Britain as well. We see well clad, relatively prosperous individuals – by global standards-fighting for “things”. Not for food, not for clean air or safe water, but for white goods, and other items which, as regards survival, they probably don’t need.

In the second video we see indonesian miners, hacking out lumps of raw sulphur from a the Ijen Volcano in East Java. Carrying up to 90 Kilos of sulphur several times a day down the side of the volcano, for only 10$ to 15$ a day, their only protection is their clothing, and a hopelessly inadequate damp cloth around the mouth and nostrils so as to keep out the fumes. Hydrogen sulphide and sulphur dioxide rot their teeth and bodies, and the life expectancy for such miners is approx 30 years. Do they mine the sulphur to buy the “things”, that so many of us hunt through the stores on Black Friday, or do they fight each other so as to get that oh so special handbag, or the latest Ipad or flat screen high definition, interactive, touchscreen T.V? Maybe, in their dreams, they might do so, but look at the words of one of the miners, and reflect upon what you read.

“Our families worry when we come here. They say working here can shorten your life,” says Hartomo, 34, a sulphur miner for 12 years. “I do it to feed my wife and kid. No other job pays this well,” adds Sulaiman.

There you have it folks, no other job pays that well, 10$-15$ a day, and he plies his trade to feed his wife and kid.

His words, not mine.

Is this the world we wish to see around us, Is this the world which we would wish to condone. I hope not, for if it is then I am ashamed to be human, and I would not wish to be known by such a name.

This is a tough post, but I’ll not withdraw a word of what I have written. As I said before at the start of this post, all of us, every single one of us, looking at these video’s, should be very, very, ashamed.


Categories: Growing pains

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3 replies

  1. Thank you for referring others to my blog. I loved your post.



  1. Consumerism- a curse, a blessing, or an inevitability | Let me tell U a story

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