Thursday, February 16, 2023

Back to the Real World

-- Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan

While I was enjoying a beautiful voyage around Baja California, and subsequently focusing on presenting my photos of the trip, the world has continued to spin. Suffering and misfortunes have loomed in the news headlines. I was lucky to escape for a while, but here are some of the things on my mind:

  • Very far from me, tens of thousands of victims in Turkey and Syria died in last week's earthquake and its aftershocks. There’s little help coming to the survivors. Thinking of bereaved families and orphaned children trying to survive in the cold without food or help is horrifying.
  • Also far away: the Ukraine war continues to destroy a formerly prosperous country to satisfy the insane egotism of a Russian despot. Is American commitment to help them weakening? Perhaps. (source
  • Globally, warming seas are creating new record-low ice in Antarctica. Scientists report “never having seen such an extreme situation before.” Continued melting is predicted until the end of this season, with dire consequences. Furthermore, sea levels throughout the world are rising; the UN secretary general warns of the potential for “a mass exodus of entire populations on a biblical scale.” (source, source)
  • Near and far: Spy balloons from China also dominated the news while I was out of touch. One was shot down in Michigan where I live. Another disaster: a train derailment in Ohio threatens to poison the population of a small town with toxic substances from the wrecked cars. And the police are responsible for committing one in 20 homicides in the US. (source, source)
  • Not-so-distant disaster: one hour’s drive from my home, another mass shooting has cut young and optimistic lives short in Lansing, Michigan. Will we ever even try to keep guns away from maniacs?

    The three victims of the terrible tragedy in Lansing, Michigan. (source)
    When will we ever learn?


    Lori said...

    We are living in very scary times that is for sure.

    eileeninmd said...

    There seem to be a lot of bad things happening now. My prayers go out to the college students, victims(both in Michigan and Turkey) and their families.

    anno said...

    Any one of these terrible stories would make for a hard week. After living through all of these so recently -- and feeling so viscerally the pain of all these people -- it's difficult to know where to set one's gaze or how to direct one's efforts: what to do with the tremendous anger and sense of injustice.

    Keeping these stories alive, acknowledging them -- as you've done here -- and not letting them be forgotten seems like a good place to start. Thank you.

    Jenn Jilks said...

    No, we won't. It is sad.
    The dude wanting to open the gun range says that it is his God given right to have guns. Not in Canada! We have to stop him.

    Jeanie said...

    Mae, I've been largely off computer the past week or so but have been scrolling down your posts and looking at your fabulous trip. From the remarkable birds and wildlife to those whale and sunsets -- of all the trips you've shared, this is the one I think I would go on in a heartbeat. Stunning.

    I'm sorry you had to return to the real world, our real world. I don't even know what to do anymore. It's bad when your own deep depressing hole is better than coming out of it.

    Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

    So much tragedy in our world. I am deeply saddened by all of it.

    Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

    There is so much tragedy in our world. I am deeply saddened by all of it.