Representation Through Humiliation

3/03/2005

Spreading the Wealth

Figured I'd post this essay I did for school. Enjoy:



In a time span of only three months, 800,000 innocent people were slaughtered. This massacre occurred in the African country of Rwanda in the year 1994. The two groups involved in the violence were the Hutus and the Tutsis, the latter of which was seen as the “ruling class” while the Hutus were subjected to lesser education and opportunities. The stage was set for a disaster. All that was needed was an event the Hutus could rally their people against.

This event came in the form of the political assassination of the unpopular president at the time, Juvenal Habyarimana. Furious over this murder (of which there is still no evidence the Tutsus took part in,) the Hutus killed leaders of the opposing political party and thousands of Tutsis and sympathizing Hutus and sent followers throughout the country to spread their mindless violence.

Once all was said and done, about 800,000 Rwandans were murdered. And what was the U.S. doing at the time? Watching it happen on the 7 o’clock news. No country in the world could care less about what was happening in Rwanda. Even the United Nations retreated after just ten soldiers had become victims of the violence.

Eventually the flame of genocide burned itself out, but not before it had destroyed hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children. And the United States, our home sweet home, never lifted one delicate little finger.

Imagine how many lives could have been saved if we took note of what was going on around us and reacted efficiently. Hundreds? Thousands? Sadly we will never know.

We cannot allow something this horrendous to happen right under our noses again.
There’s an old saying that “charity begins at home” but too many think it ends there as well. If the United States hopes to regain its standing in the world that was recently sacrificed through (more) needless warfare, we have to shape up.

The only thing we’ve done to help the world at large in recent memory was contribute to the tsunami rescue effort. And even then, we had to be pressured by other nations to hand over our share of the funds. This kind of behavior is an insult to our nation. If we are the wealthiest nation in the world, can’t we afford to donate sufficient money without someone twisting out arm?

Needless to say I am not talking about increasing our presence overseas by invading Middle Eastern countries after dubbing them “The Axis of Evil” as has been per-usual these last few years. The charity I’m speaking of is genuine aid, military or otherwise, to nations in need. If we keep standing ignorantly in the middle of this violence, how can we expect to prevent the next Holocaust?


(Cross posted at BNN)