Cowardice will speak loudly.
And other social media DOHs.
by Stan Faryna
Reporters and journalists filmed, photographed, and reported on the murder of 24-year-old Biswajit Das as he was beaten and stabbed to death in a political youth rally in Bangladesh. You can read the story at Global Voices.
Some have spoken out against the cowardice of media agents who did nothing to save the young man’s life.
Others have spoken out in defense of the media agents inaction and so-called professional neutrality.
You may (or may not) remember Kevin Carter’s Pulitizer Prize winning photograph of the helpless, starving Sudanese child and the nearby vulture waiting to feed. Carter was much criticized for his admitted failure to assist the child. Carter was also compared to the vulture.
Some years later, Carter would commit suicide.
Here’s my take on the journalists that watched Biswajit Das being murdered :
Cowardice will speak loudly. And cowards will vehemently defend cowardice – even if it is the failure and, ultimately, self-defeat of another coward.
Self-defeat gathers company just like a flame will draw moths.
The dignity and worth of the human person is an apriori and necessary proposition of our existential, social and political condition. One’s duty as an employee, professional, artist, etc. is secondary to our profound obligation to help the other who faces immediate, great danger.
Any confusion of this represents a cultural problematic of considerable scandal. Such confusion also signals that human happiness, freedom and life as the cornerstones of political community are not in high regard.
Today, I also suppose that enlightenment (of either the philosophical or spiritual kind) shall not be found in Bangladesh. Nor among the company of journalists.
I am deeply saddened to register this unfortunate data point.
13 December 2012