“We love disasters that have nothing to do with us”
I find this quote eerily true. The amount of people speaking about instant atrocities such as tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes, tsunamis, fires, etc etc shocks me in comparison to those speaking about human-made disasters such as climate change, human rights abuses, political disasters and repression, genocide, mass atrocities.
Why is this? Because we feel guilty? Because we don’t want to confront something scary that could be inside us? because “natural disasters” seem somehow purer, less explainable, more godsent? Because human-made disasters seem more circumstantial and explainable, but natural disasters are seemingly random? Because we can make someone an enemy in a human-made disaster, but there is no controversy in a natural disaster?
Both occurrences are preventable in different ways. The increase in natural disasters is intimately linked to climate change, and the amount of mass atrocities and human-made disasters is linked to wealth and power inequality perpetuated by capitalism and globalisation, particularly the concept of neocolonialism, which I will not go into detail now, but will dedicate some time to examining in a later entry.
Is it worse to be killed in an earthquake or murdered? I don’t know, both seem pretty grim. But I think more time, energy, policy, and money needs to be spent investigating human-made disasters and how to end and prevent them than continually responding too late.