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Life in the Rest of the World

November 18, 2009
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Descending the Cairo Side a novel of the traveling life

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As we sit in our snug North American and European houses, well-fed and properly clothed, how often do we wonder about the rest of the world’s population and the means by which they eke out their survival?

Ir is simple to depict other, less developed societies as quaint reminders of our own past.  But when their citizens, forced from desperation and decades of foreign exploitation, crash airplanes into the towers of our economic superiority, when they fight our technological mastery on the battlefield with cell phone bombs, we have to wonder why, why are these events happening?  Where did we go wrong, and how might we fix the gross inequalities we have created to support our impossibly lavish lifestyle to the detriment of the rest of Earth’s population.

Great wars loom on the horizon, wars that we are bound to lose unless we change our thinking about the exclusivity of global corporatism.  How much longer will the First World get away with the wholesale theft of other nations’ resources?

All photos by KG Herring

1) women’s inequality, Yemen

2) open sewer, India

3) Garbage disposal, Yemen

4) Clothes washing, India

4) village life, India

5) Petro-chemical factory near Assiut, Egypt.  Ever wonder why the Muslim Brotherhood got its start here?

A Possible Solution

We must interact across political and cultural boundaries.  Only then will we see that humans might have more in common with one another than we imagine. And we must stop stealing the world’s resources, raping their forests, and destroying their natural environments. Idealism?  Perhaps, but the survival of the planet hangs in the balance.

5) My mother with Yemeni tribesmen.  I think it’s fair to say that none of these people would be allowed entry into the United States or Canada.  (You’ll notice they like to carry assault weapons as status symbols.)


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