[col. writ. 3/7/10] (c) '10 Mumia Abu-Jamal
The events of recent weeks in Haiti and Chile have had impacts far beyond the borders of these countries.
These impacts have been global.
The earthquake in Haiti gave the world a new, dystopian vision of devastation, especially in Port-au-Prince, the capital city of over 2 million souls. The collapse of the presidential palace seemed a symbol of national collapse.
The earthquake in Chile, although many times more powerful than that which shattered Haiti, caused about a thousand times less death.
How could this be, unless it was an illustration of how a moderately wealthy country weathers a catastrophe better than a desperately poor one? By wealth, I mean social well-being, as measured by the stability of homes and building construction.
Still, the Chilean quake reportedly affected the earth's very orbit, if only for a millionth of a second.
Yet, in the midst of immense suffering and loss, lessons emerge.
Like, things can change, drastically, in an eye blink. Thus, our feelings of control and stability are but illusion.
In politics, revolutions are earthquakes, unseen until the old world crumbles. As in natures earthquake, the forces that cause these events are often unseen, underground and not foreseen.
The can happen -- just like that.
--(c) '10 maj