Thursday, February 4, 2010

Well, That Didn't Restore My Faith in Humanity

I think I'm in emotional shock.

I just finished reading Richard Flanagan's Unknown Terrorist. It's not a happy all. It's about an innocent woman who's accused of terrorism. The basic idea of the story is that in a split second the whole world can turn against you...even when you've done nothing wrong.

People like to have villains. They will create them, and then others will quickly believe in the mythology. They'll join the witch hunt.

I'm not going to write a long post, because I want to go to bed. I just feel I need to write this, otherwise I might have trouble sleeping. Even with writing it, I might have trouble. Who knows.

Anyway, here are some ideas/guidelines my recent life experiences and this book have taught me.

1. We need to remember there are always two sides to every story.

2. We are not obligated to give anyone our forgiveness. But I do think we owe them the chance to apologize AND the chance to explain themselves.

3. Unless we know all the facts, we should not join a bandwagon of hatred.

4. We should not twist or hide someone's side of the story to make them look more guilty than they truly are.

5. If we know or believe someone is innocent, it's not okay to stay silent. We should defend them or at least quietly let them know that we're on their side.

Shit and I also saw the end of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas today. Fiction-wise....this has NOT been a happy day for me.

Tomorrow I shall start reading Eragon. Hopefully, that will be a more uplifting tale.

Thanks for listening.


  1. It is very sad situation and I cannot imagine the pain of the falsely accused person...
    Hope someday our faith in humanity will be restored ...

  2. Farila,

    Actually you are one of the people who helps to restore my faith.

  3. Great post. I needed to read that today.

  4. Laura,

    Thanks. I hope you're okay. ?????

    If you need to talk, email me.

    My parents just emailed me about getting together with you guys in Sydney. They look forward to seeing all of you!

  5. Guess what.. got up to read in paper about a woman terrorist from Pakistan...
    Thanks Dina...

  6. how bizarre i just finished writing a comment with "restore my faith in humanity" and then I saw that was the title of your post on my blog-talk about synchronicity!!!

  7. Zhen,

    That's an awesome case of synchronosity. And I've had a lot of synchronosity, this past week or so, regarding stuff in this post.

    I think it's the universe telling me I need to deal with these issues. And probably not just me.....

  8. I felt exactly the same way about "The Unknown Terrorist". It's an uncomfortable but vitally important story in this day and age.

    Hope you slept well, sweet friend.


  9. Fe,

    Yeah. I think it's better to face these disturbing realities than it is to deny them.

    I DID sleep well, thank you. I think writing out my feelings helped : )

  10. I like to think the justice system has improved so that fewer falsely accused people are convicted.

    However, it seems easier these days to make a false accusation and have it investigated, the consequences of which can still be devastating.

  11. Michael,

    I think today it's less trial-by-jury, and more trial-by-the-media.

    Someone I'll be writing about in the future is a great example of it all.

    I don't know how we get around it. I think once we are given the suggestion that someone is guilty, it's hard to get the idea out of our imaginations.

  12. Never a truer word/s been said!

  13. Alex,

    Thanks. I think? Well, I wish it wasn't so true! Maybe that's what I should say.