Thoughts on Paris

There are two main things that got me thinking regarding the terrorist attacks on Paris.

Firstly, it got me questioning my idea of safety. If a developed city such as Paris could be terrorised in the manner as we’ve just seen, what’s stopping terrorists from assaulting other cities around the world? It’s got me thinking about my hometown of Manila. Modi operandi such as the “laglag bala” scam have gone rampant, and discussions on social media, sadly, have only been good as finger pointing. If policing is so weak to let these incidents happen, how much more susceptible are people to attacks like in Paris? And not just to Manila, but to similar cities around the world.

Secondly, if anything of great importance has arisen this week, it’s perhaps the need for empathy. Some of that empathy has already been displayed in beautiful ways across the world, but what I mean is how we’ll be feeling a week, a month, or even a year from now. Will the focus of our feelings shift from the victims who are recuperating - some of who might not even fully recover physically or mentally - to the terrorists and the greater body that caused their suffering? I’ve been seeing some of that recently as ISIS claimed responsibility for the attacks.

Two videos have influenced my view regarding this. The first video is one of Casey Neistat’s superb vlogs, which opened with a monologue regarding his experiences during 9/11, and how that made him feel despite suffering no physical effects. The second one is another monologue by an Austrailian newscaster that warns of the dangers if we let frustrations towards ISIS escalate, and how that might even be playing into their plans.

 

I’m not saying we forgive and forget, but I think it’s best to leave issues like these to politics. I don’t think ISIS is going to listen to our Facebook outcries. What we can do to an effective degree is stand in support of not just Paris, but other places affected by terrorism such as Beirut.