Wednesday, April 16, 2008

handing sandwiches out at the gates of hell

I recently had the opportunity to see Samantha Power speak at the local Indigo. She wrote a landmark book on America’s involvement during genocides, that Steve loved and cited probably everyday while we lived together on Thorncliffe. She wrote a new one about this peacekeeper and was being interviewed by Heather of those “Heather’s pick” stickers.

For the most part she spoke about Barak Obama as she was an advisor to him, and it reminded me when you’re at a concert and bands reluctantly play their hit that’s years old at the behest of a crowd that hasn’t bothered to buy their new album.

One thing that she said stood out, because of the specificity of the internet we can get exactly the news we want no more no less. We self identify and compartmentalize and insolate ourselves far away from ugly truths like genocide because “African slaughter fields” didn’t pop up in our search engine when we entered celebrity gossip. She says we’re lacking these “serendipitous encounters with inconvenient truths” and I tend to agree.

If I hadn’t subscribed to the Globe back in ’04 I never would have heard about the Orange revolution, and I never would have gone to Ukraine and I never would have started down the path that many credit as my launching pad to my current success. What else are we missing, by choice or otherwise?

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