Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Last Post

Going to Wheelock right now. BUt before that. lemme post something i came across. :X

"An article written by philosopher Peter Singer. It's an extremely challenging article that challenges us on the responsiblity the relatively rich like us have to the poor." (to quote anonymous.)

The Singer Solution to World Poverty

"The average family in the United States spends almost one-third of its income on things that are no more necessary to them than Dora's new TV was to her. Going out to nice restaurants, buying new clothes because the old ones are no longer stylish, vacationing at beach resorts. So much of our income is spent on things not essential to the preservation of our lives and health. Donated to one of a number of charitable agencies, that money could mean the difference between life and death for children in need.

All of which raises a question: In the end, what is the ethical distinction between a Brazilian who sells a homeless child to organ peddlers and an American who already has a TV and upgrades to a better one, knowing that the money could be donated to an organization that would use it to save the lives of kids in need?"

I think it's a little bullshit. Why do we have to bear responsibility for the poor? To put it in a cold, hard light, whether they live or die is none of our concern. To say that the money we spend on frivolous things may mean the death of a child/person somewhere is just crap.

"Oh you wanna eat at McDonalds? YOU'RE KILLING A CHILD!"

"Oh, you wanna buy a mechanical pencil? YOU'RE KILLING A HUMAN!"

It is almost like the theory that some butterfly beating its puny wings somewhere in the world caused a typhoon in another part of the world. (Maybe the migrating birds caused the Hurricane Kat?)

"How much would we have to give one of these organizations to have a high probability of saving the life of a child threatened by easily preventable diseases? (I do not believe that children are more worth saving than adults, but since no one can argue that children have brought their poverty on themselves, focusing on them simplifies the issues."

Er. One forgets that the same children that didn't bring poverty on themselves grow up to become grown ups stuck in the poverty cycle. Besides. I think sometimes we focus too much on trying to save people. Do they want to be saved in the first place? When you read about the kids in Africa with AIDS, do you go "Oh poor thing. I'll donate 5 bucks lah."

Maybe you do. But so what if you do? They're still going to have AIDs. Their life ain't gonna improve much. They're still going to die - probably because of AIDs. All you do is prolong their suffering. You are saving them from death to live a much worser fate.

And then we ask ourselves. Is it worth saving them because ultimately they still die? Which means to say the 5 bucks you donated went down the drain.

Of course - I don't mean to say we shouldn't donate - because we should

I'm just saying - don't think that your donation really helped them. Because in reality, it is like putting a cork to stop the titanic from sinking. It might help - but it won't stop the inevitable.