“People everywhere should place themselves in the shoes of the vulnerable, from Syria to the Central African Republic, and ask themselves what more they can do,’’ UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, reflecting on Rwanda.
When I consider global events and social injustices, and how I should respond to these, I usually think to myself “What if that was me? What would the world say if that happened to my son? How would I respond if my son was the one being harmed?”
Over the last week I have been thinking a great deal abotu the atrocities committed in Rwanda, which, although sometimes it feels as though it happened yesterday, occoured 20 years ago.
It is hard for me to imagine that two decades have past since the world first saw images of the horrors occurring on the streets of Rwanda. What should be even harder for us to imagine however is that it seems that even after we saw the consquences of inaction in 1994, and although we saw with our own eyes the terror inflicted on innocents, today, people are still being killed needlessly in the Central African Republic and Syria.
Mandela asked me a month ago, why we don’t save children from wars when we know they are being hurt – he was talking about a little Syrian boy we saw on the news, and then the children he heard a song about in Rwanda.
Perhaps it is because we are not putting outselves in the shoes of those suffering?
Thankyou Ban Ki-Moon for reminding the world of this – perhaps if we did consider the injustices inflicted on others as our own responsibility then we could save the children Mandela is so worried about.