For all the people out there saying ‘the world only cares about Paris’, maybe, it’s a correct thing to say but it’s not the best thing to say. Like, it hurts and it may not be very helpful.
Firstly, I think it may not be our choice to only be informed of what happens to Paris. I don’t read the news much. I rely mainly on Facebook, Twitter and friends for my world news. I know, dumb and uninformed. But because of that, I really only take notice of the headlines, the biggest news of the day. And for this weekend, it happened to be Paris.
Secondly, my close friend was in Paris when it happened. She’s fine but my point is, whether the world cares or not, the struggles and loss and death of these innocent people are real too, no less real than that in other places. For their sake, maybe, just maybe we can push aside this debate about whether the world (every itsy bitsy person in the whole wide world) ONLY cares about Paris. It’s a lot of generalization and I personally feel like it minimizes the pain of the ones suffering losses in Paris right now. And hey, if anything happened to my friends in Paris, you can imagine the pain would be much greater and more personal. I am sorry, I am only human. I feel more anxiety and more grief when something or someone I have more emotional attachment to is at risk.
Thirdly, even if I were to say I did a small donation drive for Syria sometime back, no one is going to believe me right? And probably no one cares if there are really people who care for all human lives in general. I already hear the objections ‘Only Paris and Syria?’ but honestly there’s no end to it. As much I would love to be able to help many, my care and concern can only reach a few and is of course, limited to the news I was getting. There are people who want to say something bad, wants to be the person who points out the mistakes of the larger population. But hey, what have you done for the non-Paris casualties? Now it almost seems like it’s WRONG for us to mourn for Paris. Like, just let people grief and mourn, and not feel like we are throwing this idea of ‘you don’t deserve this attention because other suffering people in other parts of the world receive less media coverage than you.’ at them.
Well, no matter who or what we choose to mourn today, there’s always some unreached, unheard, unsung group out there and it is our fault for not including them.. right? There’s no way to be correct.
And so today, I choose to mourn for Paris, and I appreciate the reminder to pray for the rest of the world too. But please don’t make me feel guilty and shallow for simply mourning something I know about and not mourning for something I did not know about. You can educate and inform me about what’s going on elsewhere, yes, but just don’t make me feel as if Paris did not deserve any bit of my time or prayers. And please don’t make me feel that somewhere out there, someone deserves it more. No one does.
We all need prayers.
Like, all of us flawed people in this world, we need it.
I will just pray and God will take care of it from there. I may not know everything that is going on, but God knows all of them by name. So I choose to trust in my God.
*Also, I have two other not-so-close kinda friends in Paris and I do hope they got out safely too.