Liberal Grace

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Horse vs Human



I think most Americans would say they value human life more than animal life.

If that's true, then what the hack happened last weekend?

There were two major stories happened on May 20/21.

1) Barbaro seriously injured in Preakness
2) At least 16 civilians killed in bombing of Afghan Village

But the story of a horse with a broken leg buried the story of a slaughtered village.

What's going on here? Why the compassion for the horse but indifference for Afghan villagers?

Many foreigners and, especially, Muslims conclude that Americans are a bunch of callous SOB's who really don't care about anyone but themselves.

No one can argue the premise of their conclusion: on that day, America cared more about the broken leg of a horse than the shattered lives of a whole Iraqi village.

Does this prove we're callous SOBs?

Here's my theory which is more nuisanced than the SOB theory but it still doesn't make us look very good:


1) The horse was on TV; the villagers weren't
2) We knew the name of the horse but not the villagers
3) The villagers could be terrorists, who knows? it's all so confusing. The horse was clearly innocent.
4) The horse was American; the villagers are not.
5) We have a cultural fondness for horses but not for Afghan villagers
6) We're all kind of tired of war news.

If you sum up my five points are we still callous SOBs? I have to wonder.

Many foreigners have no doubt.

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