Wednesday, November 13, 2013


What's Left After Typhoon Haiyan

Photos from the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan are horrifying; I nearly cried looking at these four dog victims, and the reality that's setting in for all these people is beyond imagination. At the Atlantic, Conor Friedersdorf writes, "The stories about inaccessible areas of the Philippines, where authorities haven't yet seen the damage—let alone helped the survivors—makes me reflect on the global drone fleet, and imagine an alternative world where it was optimized and expanded to spot victims rather than insurgents, delivering drinking water rather than Hellfire missiles."

Oh, it's awful, and the U.N. climate change delegate from the Philippines is still fasting for what is likely a hopeless cause, and there are these hungry kids and then also all these other ones, and I just: here's the Philippine Red Cross.

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Ugh. This makes me wish so bad that we didn't live in a world where everyone is so locked into jobs, money, so-called obligations-- that we could simply set our own lives down for a second and help people who need it. But it's just a segment on the news, to be turned off whenever we please. On to the next story, on to "things happening here," on to our own lives that are so far removed from reality in some ways.

Sorry, thinking out loud.

And the dog victims... Nope nope nope. Can't look, will be a weeping heap of inconsolable sadness.


I'm sorry, I know it's sad seeing the animal victims, but it feels extremely dehumanizing to focus on these dogs in the face of all the suffering and loss of human life.

This feels similar to all the newscasters who have been interviewing white vacationers instead of actual filipinos--as if their stories don't count unless they are in relation to white Americans. I know you probably didn't mean it this way, but the dehumanization of filipinos in the past week has just really been bothering me.

de Pizan

You can see Yeb Sano's full speech here (also includes a transcript) http://www.democracynow.org/2013/11/12/stop_this_madness_filipino_climate_chief (his speech starts about 17:30)
"Mr. President, I speak for my delegation, but I speak for the countless people who will no longer be able to speak for themselves after perishing from the storm. I speak also for those who have been orphaned by the storm. I speak for those of—the people now racing against time to save survivors and alleviate the suffering of the people affected. We can take drastic action now to ensure that we prevent a future where supertyphoons become a way of life, because we refuse, as a nation, to accept a future where supertyphoons like Haiyan become a way of life. We refuse to accept that running away from storms, evacuating our families, suffering the devastation and misery, counting our dead become a way of life. We simply refuse to."

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