21 May 2010

Fads or phases?

As many of you know, I am deeply moved by the suffering of women caught in human trafficking or living in societies that marginalize women. We are beginning to see a lot on news casts, from non-profits, and religious organizations with these themes. CNN Video and article Iranian women in jeopardy

I am moved to the point of it impacting my life and what I strive to do, but I remember other times when the church or society has gotten behind things and then, well, lost interest. It's not that the issue goes away or is miraculously cured, but I wonder if it is that we wear out our collective consciousness on a certain theme or subject. Am I wrong? Can you see this?

In the 1980s, as a teenager the issue was abortion. Obviously a painful topic for those who have experienced and a sensitive one for those against it. There were conferences and marches and legislation limiting who could get what, where, and where the protesters could stand and so on.

AIDS also arose a bit later in the 80s and through the 90s we heard much about it. Movie stars took up the cause and did fund raisers and raised awareness. Africa has suffered hugely under this burdensome disease. Still no cure, medications to help things, but are we still deeply embedded with the message?

I am not saying, please don't get me wrong, that these example issues are not still important they are. But that's my point, we don't shout as loud as we once did. I'm already concerned about the day we move on from the victims of trafficking. Not that they will all be freed but our consciousness will be called away.

Am I imagining these "fads" of interest or is this real?


  1. I saw that article as well. The mindset involved with blaming and punishing the most innocent of victims has twisted, at the very least.

    I think the problem of moving from issue to issue is a question of what to do. For example people were talking about the atrocities in Sudan in the late nineties (I wrote a short paper on it in college), but so far as I know none of the awareness from celebrities and the like has led to real change.

    There are very few things I could bring myself to protest (or march) about because I usually feel that protesting does more harm than good. You can alienate those who don't already agree with you and the act in itself implies a black and white view that leaves no room for nuanced perspective. Some marches and protests have led to good things, though, so I probably shouldn't judge.

  2. Correction: "has twisted" should have been "has to be twisted."

  3. Good point about there not being changes often. Today I heard a organization Susan B Anthony foundation that is backing specifically strong women politicians with prolife - prowoman agendas. That will probably be more effective than all the protests in the 80s. I did do some then - I was in my teens and now tend to agree with you. There's more sides to each story. Did you see the movie Juno? Another teen is outside a clinic and says something (not unkind, just a medical fact) and it changes the course of the story. It's a secular produced movie, irreverent in many ways, yet I think a prolife story.