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Darfur 400,000 and counting.
November 29, 2005 6:44 PM   Subscribe

Yesterday, Nicholas Kristof, a New York Times Op-Ed columnist, wrote a compelling article on the dire situation in Darfur and ways Americans can respond to this tragedy. Yeah, that's thoughtful and all but we already talked about that here, and here, and here, and oh yeah, here and even more here! So, what do the last two years teach me about 400,000 dead? That I still couldn't tell you exactly where it is in Africa..but I know that Paris dated a guy named Paris. Happy sleeping America, and now where's my Soma.
posted by Mr Bluesky (30 comments total)

 
Honestly, this is the one issue that I have written to my representatives several times about. I get form letters that say they too are concerned.

????????
posted by mrgrimm at 6:48 PM on November 29, 2005


You should probably take a look at a map of Africa.
posted by loquax at 6:56 PM on November 29, 2005


It's the one below Egypt.

Also, the "ways Americans can respond to this tragedy" is... write a letter to your Congressman.
posted by smackfu at 7:05 PM on November 29, 2005


Unless anyone who says they care is on a plane to Sudan with a cache of weapons and willing to stand in the doorway (since no governments apparently want to intervene) I'm not really going to think they care.
posted by Captaintripps at 7:05 PM on November 29, 2005


The Soma link was intresting.
posted by delmoi at 7:27 PM on November 29, 2005


Are there Terrists?
posted by AspectRatio at 7:41 PM on November 29, 2005


Thanks delmoi, yeah the whole Darfur thing was an aside. Actually, after linking it I started to think of how the study of TV's effect on child development and how it mirrors the stunting of receptors from drug use. "It's somatainment tonight, its somatainment tonight"

Obey my sheepy peeps!!!!
posted by Mr Bluesky at 7:41 PM on November 29, 2005


seen the new harry potter?
posted by quonsar at 8:06 PM on November 29, 2005


Look, someone read a Brave New World...

Or more than likely caught the TV movie.
posted by SweetJesus at 8:08 PM on November 29, 2005


Look, someone read a Brave New World...

OMG, i cant belive he mentioned huxley...lol!!!!
posted by iamck at 8:25 PM on November 29, 2005


> Are there Terrists?

AspectRatio, that reminds me of a joke I was quite pleased with but never did anything with (e.g. submitting a story to the onion):

Bush, defeating terrism one syllable at a time.
posted by TonyRobots at 8:36 PM on November 29, 2005


I know that someone is trying to school me, but Charlie Brown's teacher is all I can hear.
posted by ColdChef at 8:58 PM on November 29, 2005


We barely have enough capacity to fret over our mortgages and Hummers and religion. Who's got time to care about people who aren't even like us?

Soma sweet soma.
posted by Saydur at 9:06 PM on November 29, 2005


Yeah, I'm waiting for this area to become more stable. the ruins would make for great science.

I also refuse all guilt associated with Paris' lovelife.
posted by Busithoth at 10:08 PM on November 29, 2005


I don't know. The green Save Darfur bracelet might clash with my yellow Livestrong bracelet. Too many bracelets, not enough wrists.
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 11:20 PM on November 29, 2005


From the Paris Latsis site:

Now Paris wants to be a Royal Princess. Or at least get married like one. St Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey and Windsor Castle in England are amazing places to be married but they're reserved for members of the royal family. So, what are the rich and beautiful to do? Exactlly what Paris did, write a letter to Prince Paul and ask him to hook you up with a dispensation.

Smart girl that Paris, but I suspect she'll wait rather a long time for a reply from this 'Prince Paul'.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 1:01 AM on November 30, 2005


So you turn off the TV and all the troubles in the world fall on your head?
No thanks.
posted by Joeforking at 1:21 AM on November 30, 2005


There's a drug now that is actually called Soma, but it's used to relieve aching muscles rather than aching consciences.
posted by leapingsheep at 2:45 AM on November 30, 2005


This is the problem: We care, but we don't know what we can do that lets us feel like we are actually helping. There is not an easily available answer short of following captaintripps suggestion or writing to our congressman, which we know is futile. The frustration is in this sense of helplessness so we turn to Paris and her like to avoid our own pain. Apathy is not a cause, its an effect. So what's left but a little bit of Paris and whatever other brands of soma are at hand?
posted by donfactor at 3:16 AM on November 30, 2005


smackfu,

The link in your comment also leads to a map of Sudanese regions. There are apparently many Darfurs. [PDF]
posted by Colloquial Collision at 5:05 AM on November 30, 2005


Respond to tragedy?

What would you folks have America do? Invade? Shall we attempt to force democracy on Sudan?

Most of what is wrong in Africa can be traced to Opec, DeBeers, uranium mines, coal mines, and any number of white owned Euro-American businesses. Take all the resources from a continent for peanuts and you get poverty.

Poverty is the root of all evil.

Using the tanks we built with the steel we barely even paid for to force Sudan to behave is the international version of dysfunctional parenting.

I'm awake Mr. Bluesky. Awake and tired of my fellow Left wingers who are all criticizing and no solutions.
posted by BeerGrin at 5:50 AM on November 30, 2005


Captaintripps:
Unless anyone who says they care is on a plane to Sudan with a cache of weapons and willing to stand in the doorway (since no governments apparently want to intervene) I'm not really going to think they care.

I hope you're being sarcastic.

I care, sir, but not so far as to HarrisonFordInMosquitoCoast my family off to Sudan in the hopes that my hunting rifles will somehow prevent further death in this poor region.

I care, so I supported relief agencies who were giving assistance in the region, until they were forced out.
At which point I petitioned my government representative.

To claim that we must all immediately board planes to Sudan, armed to the teeth, and abandon our lives and families - or else we don't care, is just fucking silly.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 5:58 AM on November 30, 2005


Also, Americans don't know what portobello mushrooms look like!
posted by klangklangston at 6:05 AM on November 30, 2005


damn you, klangston.
you made me think of the game.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 6:08 AM on November 30, 2005


Let me be blunt: nobody is going to do anything about the Sudan because there is no economic benefit in doing so. We talk about morals, oh, how we talk about morals, but they're expensive and we don't want to pay. It's that simple, and it's that ugly. Write your congressman forever - the government has already passed judgement.
posted by theinsectsarewaiting at 6:10 AM on November 30, 2005


This 400,000 number, got any links? I don't see it mentioned in the op-ed piece.
posted by exhilaration at 10:20 AM on November 30, 2005


I always like to propose a toast to Darfur at parties - it always gets things set off right.
posted by iamck at 12:09 PM on November 30, 2005


Exh..try reading the actual website..like the front page.
posted by Mr Bluesky at 12:46 PM on November 30, 2005


There are things that can be done, as Kristof pointed out, but not too many people give a shit. I'm including myself because I never give it a second thought until I happen to come across an article like this one. I never see it on any type of news program and that is the only TV I watch for the most part.

I just think it's a cop-out to say, "Oh we can't do anything about it anyway" when that is not true. Why can't we be honest, and tell it like it is...most of us don't care that much.
posted by sultan at 9:54 PM on November 30, 2005


"I just think it's a cop-out to say, "Oh we can't do anything about it anyway" when that is not true. Why can't we be honest, and tell it like it is...most of us don't care that much.
posted by sultan at 12:54 AM EST on December 1 [!]"

Ummm, My question was serious. On a real pragmatic level what exactly do people think we can do? Invade? Take over? Force international businesses to stop raping Africa's resources and leaving only dirt behind? If we leave more money in Africa who does it go to? Shall we give it to dictators or to a hunger crazed mob?

When war has errupted we have already failed to do what we needed to do. Showing up with tanks because that is how Americans feel comfortabl e"Doing something" is not an answer. The poverty and political madness in Africa ia a bountiful harvest of the greed and ignorance the west spend year sowing.
posted by BeerGrin at 6:10 AM on December 1, 2005


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