It should go without saying that my heart goes out to Belgium today as it went out to Turkey a few days ago and as it goes out to the people of Syria, South Sudan, Iraq and Nigeria every single day. It’s extraordinarily depressing how much longer I could make that list. And it does scare me when I think about my son growing up in a world filled with so much conflict and violence.
I have to remind myself that we all focus on the events that are the most shocking rather than those that are most pervasive. The reason we’re going to spend days, maybe weeks, talking about the dozens of innocents who were killed in Brussels while not sparing a minute on the thousands who have been killed in South Sudan over the last two years is because both Sudan and South Sudan have been plagued by violence for such a long time we’ve become numb to it while Belgium has been a place of relative peace and security since the end of WWII. The lives of the Belgians are no more valuable than the lives of the Sudanese and obviously what’s happening in Sudan deserves A LOT more media coverage than it’s been getting. But seeing an attack on an area we’ve come to think of as one of our safe places, a land that has been a sanctuary for others fleeing violence elsewhere, is a shock to the system and deserves attention and examination. It’s a new loss to morn.