Thursday, May 26, 2011

Post Apocalypse

Some believe the end of the world will come in fire, smoke and poison, leaving none alive. Sometimes, I wonder if it got one detail wrong. Maybe the apocalypse already happened, and we’re living after the end. It’s hard to distinguish the beginning of the end, but I suppose if you wish to be Biblical and use a seven-year timetable, 1938 will do.
By then, the Nuremberg Laws had already been in place for three years, laying the foundations of the Holocaust. And seven year later, over six million Jews had burned like firewood in the crematoriums of death camps. A memoir of death-camp liberators I’d read recently contains gut-wrenching descriptions of the concentration camps. I thought, if ordinary people, supposedly civilized people, can do such things, can the end be far away?
The world today is, though less obviously so, a place where the horrible is becoming increasingly mundane. Think about our indifference to those suffering from starvation, religious persecution, and abuse. The world might end without our notice.

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