Fight World Hunger

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Sunday, March 04, 2007

Something terribly wrong

Its some sort of imbalance, I think. People who don't know what they're doing. People trying to make your life difficult. Church elders embezzling funds, rapists getting away with a fine, unsolved murders, unsolved murders with political connections, highway robberies, brittle interracial relationships, the economy in general, and global warming are among other things that would come up over a few drinks at the bar.

What most of us can do is just shrug it off, hope for the best and get on with life. That's how we are trained to accept things as they are. Witnessing a robbery nowadays means you walk away and get to a safe place quick. You don't want to be walking into a parang wielding attacker. Don't invite trouble. Of course that course is logical for our survival, but what I'm talking about is not being a hero and save the day. I'm not suggesting executing some kung-fu moves you just saw in a movie. But more of, what can you do to prevent this from happening?

Police have recently been boarding busses this festive season to curb drivers from speeding and what not, and that proved to be effective. They should've done that ages ago. Speeding lorries and busses still ranks as one of the most fatal of accidents simply because of their massiveness when you're talking about impact with a regular passenger vehicle. You read about accidents where people slam into a trailer. Why? You see the way some people drive without looking ahead. A trailer doesn't have a third brake light, but then again neither do a lot of cars around here. Sometimes cars have only one working brake light. Whose fault is that if they get hit from behind and somebody gets killed?

Don't be paranoid. Someone once told me that I think too much. These things don't always happen, you just take it easy okay? Now, I ask you to tell me that again. You're talking about break-ins, snatch thefts, murders, robberies, rapes. I am talking about people you talk to everyday who can tell you that his/her friend, or a friend of a friend just got robbed. To achieve this kind of statistic, either the coincidences are aligned with the stars and it just so happens that everyone knows someone who knows someone who went through that, or that the frequency and volume has increased to an extent that this statistic becomes so real, and common that you can actually hear real stories from real people, and its not even six degrees, its 2 or 3 degrees of separation. To read in the papers of these things happening, people getting away, and to feel indifferent to this kind of news is to know that something isn't right. Something in the system is failing miserably, and yet nothing is being done about it.

We know something should be done. But really, what? The nation is more consumed with news of fast food being unhealthy, among other seriously irrelevant things. Our emphasis on global issues only last an article or two. Try a search on global warming for instance, and only a few results come up, one was that we tried signing an agreement to go green or something like that years ago. Either that didn't work out, or that somewhere along the line we just failed to follow up on that. We don't have the initiative to even think of recycling.

Oh really, there is a recycling drive in our country? The people who set up these recycling centres are just out to make a quick buck. Besides the fact they're unfriendly, which really doesn't matter, they can't give two cents about the environment. They're in it for the money. The rule is anything can be recycled, and everything especially dangerous waste should be disposed of properly. Try giving them a pane of glass. They'll ask you to take that away because they can't accept it. Why? Simple. They like bottles better. Its clean, its neat, and it sells for more money.

You want to talk about emissions? We practise open burning here. Irregardless of what laws there is currently in place to ban open burning, people still do it 'because it clears the mosquitos'. There is a ban on fireworks and yet kids on the streets burn these things as if they could buy these along with their ice cream, and when they throw it into *my* house I take serious offense to that. I once chased a bunch of kids with a stick and yelled at them in unimaginable rage. I think I've established myself as the new crazy man who lives here. What's great is that never happened again.

Talking about emissions. We don't have any incentive for adopting standards. Some articles back I talked about conflicting standards of the Air Pollutant Index with other developed countries, and I think that's what's happening here as well. Buying a EURO4 certified Smart car means nothing to a lot of people. Its just a tiny 2 door car, as they go about fitting their Kancils with 3" mufflers because 'its cool'.

At this rate, we'll never be a modern, dynamic, and developed country in time. We may have the infrastructure, the income generating companies, the foreign investments, or even the latest most advanced subsurface tunnel in place, but the if the people, and the way we think can't keep up with the pace, we'll be left behind in our little 'que sera sera' world.

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