Saturday, January 2, 2010

Can good defeat evil?

Most people would answer yes to the above question. Come to think about it, if you would have asked me a few years ago, I probably would have agreed. Now however, I'm not so sure. It seems the more I look, the worse things are. There are so many acts of pure evil out there, you really have to wonder if all of the good in the world can ever overcome it.

Life used to be similar to TV. The bad guy did his thing, but the good guy came along and either stopped him or made him pay for it. Not so much anymore. We have people getting away with horrific crimes with either no punishment because they claim insanity or a slap on the wrist because the criminal justice system has gotten too soft. Unfortunately, the criminals here in the US can't hold a candle to what I saw last night.

I caught an episode of 101 East last night on Al Jazeera English that I found disturbing on a level that I cannot describe. They were profiling acid attacks in Bangladesh. In one of the poorest, most crowded nations on the planet, one way for people to scratch out a living is jewelry making. Hydrochloric and nitric acid is used in the manufacturing process, which means that these acids are readily available for a cheap price. This acid is often used as a way of attacking people involved in disputes. Women and children are usually the victims of these attacks. According to the Acid Survivors Foundation, less than 10% of the offenders are ever prosecuted. The cases they profiled shocked me in a way I didn't think I could be shocked anymore.

WARNING: The following descriptions are somewhat graphic. If you are uncomfortable with this, please skip along.
The one woman they followed had acid tossed on her face because of a dispute over a bucket of water. Apparently there was some other tension between her father and his workers.
A six month old girl had acid poured over her head by her father because he wanted a son. Her picture is here. (Bangladesh story picture)
One woman was the victim of an acid attack because of a dispute between her husband and brother in law. This case is disturbing because they think that her husband carried out the attack to frame his brother.
And the worst one. A young boy had acid poured down his throat by his aunt because she was jealous. He was one month old at the time.

This is only the tip of the evil iceberg. Genocides, dictatorships, racial and gender strife...There are so many people out there who are doing things that seem inconceivable. How on earth can the good people of the world overcome the evil? I suppose this is why I'm having such a hard time with the whole religion thing. It's hard to have faith in anything when there is so much evil around. Maybe another talk with Pastor Randy is in order.

For those interested in watching this program, you will need to download Livestation. Go to livestation.com and get the player. Do not worry. I have used it many times, there is no virus risk. Al Jazeera English is one of the partners, so the channel will come included with the basic setup. The episode of 101 East will be re-broadcast at the following times:

Sunday January 3rd - 03:30 and 11:30 GMT
Monday January 4th - 16:30 GMT
Tuesday January 5th - 14:30 GMT
Wendsday January 6th - 08:30 and 19:30 GMT
Thursday January 7th - 06:30 GMT
(Central Standard Time is GMT -6)

Another word of warning. I am not one to get easily squeamish at things I see on TV. Several times I had to look away during the broadcast.

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