My heart goes out to the British today in response to this morning’s bombings. I’m sure I’m safe in saying that all of our thoughts are with the victims and their families. My post title from this morning sure seems petty in light of today’s events…
Dave Roberts at Gristmill takes note of the fact that these acts of violence will certainly put a damper on recent widespread discussion of global warming and African poverty that are at the heart of the ongoing G8 summit in Gleneagles, Scotland:
Aargh. For the first time in five godforsaken years, issues of large-scale humanitarianism were topping the headlines, instead of war, anger, and intolerance. A genuine effort was underway to coordinate the world’s largest and most powerful governments around two vital issues of our time: lifting Africa out of poverty and addressing global warming.
And now this. More violence, which will beget, as it always does, violence, anger, and territorialism in response.
We were struggling to find the higher angels of our nature, and now we’re back to the reptile brain.
So goddamn frustrating.
Exactly. Let’s hope that the leaders in Gleneagles don’t take the bait and stay as focused as possible on their initial topics of discussion. Saber-rattling is inevitable in the face of such senseless slaughter, and the perpetrators should be apprehended and punished. In the long run, though, addressing the horrors of African poverty (as well as poverty in other regions of the world), and its certain exacerbation as global warming accelerates, may be the most forceful steps we can take against terrorism. While I certainly won’t attempt to draw a clear line between radical fundamentalism and any particular social or environmental ill, we do know that desperate, hungry and hopeless people make the best recruits for terrorist causes.