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#BaghdadBombing #BeirutBombing #NepalBlockade #ParisAttacks

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Last week saw some horrific events which set social media abuzz.

There were bombings in Baghdad and Beirut. Paris faced bombing and shooting. Nepal has been reeling from not only the aftermath of the earthquake of April 25, but also from consequences of the economic blockade imposed by India. Over forty people have died in violent clashes in the Southern Plains of the country which has now been followed by the blockade resulting in acute shortage of fuels and other essential items, such as medical supplies, throughout the country.

So I started posting what many others weren’t posting. I posted on Facebook, on Twitter, on Instagram, on LinekedIn and Google+ some of which I share with you here.

I started by re-sharing, on November 13, a meme I had shared a while back on Instagram.

I followed that up with this post the next morning.

Then the following around noon.

And then the following two at mid-afternoon.

I followed those up with this not long after.

And then this.

And finally the following.

The following morning I shared this on Instagram.

(Here’s the link that appears on the post:

And, mid-afternoon, the following on Facebook…

…and the following on late afternoon…

…and this one early evening…

…and finally the following in the evening.

The next morning, I posted the following.

On November 17, the following on Instagram.

(Here’s the link to the blog post: video of honorary degree acceptance speech.)

The next day, the following on Facebook. (Incidentally, the bottom legend, colored brown, reads “WHO CARES.”)

Yesterday, I made two posts, the second one being the final and the most important one.

Here’s the first one.

And here’s the last and the most important one.

Why all that and where am I coming from?

I have had the incredible privilege of studying in five different countries, working as a teacher in ten, and traveling in about three dozen countries. In that time, I had the incredible privilege of studying with, working with, traveling with people and teaching children from all over the world.

People I know are not only from all over but are also spread all over. As a matter of fact, they are from and in so many places that I don’t have a count for the countries they are from and/or in. I don’t say that to boast but rather to make the point that any time any violent and calamitous event takes place in any corner of the world, whether natural or man-made, it’s very likely that a face or faces pop up in my head! My first reaction is, “Is that person, his/her loved ones and their community, all right?” Because you see, countries no longer represent a dot on a map to me, but rather faces and humanity.

Furthermore, to state the obvious, to me no one friend’s life in one country — or anyone’s life in any country for that matter — is worth more than that of another in a different country. But, often, it seems to me that to social media, to other media and to many around the world, lives have different values, their worth depending on, for instance, the country or region of origin. And for that reason, details of some lives and their suffering hardly make it into the consciousness of people around the world, and their voices never heard.

Hence these reactions of mine on social media following #BaghdadBombing, #BeirutBombing, #NepalBlockade and #ParisAttacks to list but a few.

And of course, I believe in peaceful resolution of conflict, any conflict, whether personal or otherwise. And I do believe in humanity!


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Update: The images were replaced with links to the posts themselves on July 27, 2016.



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