Have you ever asked yourself what would happen if you lived elsewhere or were born into a different life or fate? Would you be the same person you are now or would your current self be a hollow shell of your potential self. The fact you were born and live in a western developed country already means you have won the lottery of life by being in the top bracket of richest people in the world. This is because the west holds 45% of the worlds wealth even though they only compromise 13% of the worlds population. And that’s simply a fact from birth.
We all fall privy to taking the things we have for granted by complaining about things which would probably not even register on the radar of concerns of the majority of the world’s population. We all have needs and desires, but I’m guessing if we hadn’t won the geographical lottery our needs and desires would probably be markedly different. I’m not saying its evil or bad that we have been so lucky in life and that we can at times take things for granted. After all we are only human and as humans we are flawed and are in a way programmed to survive, live and adapt to the direct environment surrounding us. I’m just saying this becomes a problem when we choose to not look beyond our self-engrossed lives and fail to take heed of the lives and concerns of others. It’s when we become immune to the world around us that we begin to falter and loose balance and perspective. Some may call it ignorance; I like to call it pure laziness.
The current events in the Middle East I feel have really highlighted this for many people I know. People who were apolitical or not bothered suddenly have found their eyes opened to this new awareness of reality. Its mainly because many of my friends are Arabs like me and happen to have or know of people in the region. So seeing this turmoil and unrest occurring close to home has affected them. But the problem I sometimes find I ask myself, is what would happen if we were in the heart of that revolution? Would I act differently? Would I be that person who doesn’t speak up out of fear? Would I be complacent? Would I be as brave as those we hear about daily on the news?
The reason I wanted to speak about this was because of two main events I heard about that both distressed me.
The first one relates to the 13 year old child named Hamza Al-Khateeb who was beaten up arrested and grotesquely mutilated by security forces in Syria for joining a protest. The link below I think does his story justice in recounting what actually happened:
He was only 13. Imagine that, at 13 I was busy worrying about which toy I wanted my parents to buy me or where I wanted to go out to with my friends. But here is this 13 year old protesting and enduring things that not even a fully grown man could endure. The torture he suffered is that straight out of the worst horror movies. But yet he had to suffer through it all and loose his life simply because he chose to join a protest. Protesting? Something many of us would go out of our way to avoid doing. And I will be the first to hold my hands up and say I don’t go to as many as I should and that’s something I will personally work on changing.
And the second event that brought this closer to home was finding out some news from a good friend of mine about her 17 year old cousin who has been arrested, detained and beaten by police for simply wanting to start up a protest with friends in Saudi Arabia. The details below of what happened were sent to me by her and I have paraphrased it as best as possible:
He wanted to start a protest in Qatif with around 6 other boys about the current situation in Saudi with the arbitrary arrests and the abhor able role of Saudi forces in Bahrain. So they all decided to go to Qatif and just as the boys started to gather, they arrested him. His aunt wanted to see him so she went to the prison place and asked the people there where he is. Of course they sent her from center to center from Qatif to Demmam until 3 in the morning trying to find where they had detained him. When they found him he had obviously been beaten. He has exams next week and the family doesn’t know when or if they will let him out. His dad offered to pay money but they said no. His name is Mousa Jaffer Alsadah and his date of birth is 13 august 1993.
So for those who ask me what is the point of all these revolutions and protests I say it’s for people like Hamza, Mousa and the many other brave souls like them. People whose unashamedly brave & bright light should not be dulled & crushed by a repressive dictatorial self-interested-and-engrossed regime. People whose actions put the majority of supposed ‘real’ men & leaders to shame. They do this all so that subsequent future generations can live without fear of this ever occurring to them. So that they never have to deal with such inhumane depravity. They sacrifice their today for the bright future of others tomorrow. Not many of us would be able to do or endure what they did. And I’m not asking any of you to do that, all I’m asking is that you make sure their actions aren’t all in vain. So do your bit and please spread the word anyway you can by sharing this article if you haven’t already. This is especially a pressing matter of concern regarding my friend’s cousin Mousa Jaffer Alsadeh who is still being unfairly detained as I post this.
Till next Time,