By Carlos -

We’re all Japanese

Orthographic Projection of Japan (green) and i...

Reflecting upon the increasingly desperate situation of the Fukushima Dai-Ichi power plant in Japan, there are some ideas which begin to stir, and so I write:

We all have family; be it small, having 2-3 immediate relatives, or whether it contains several brothers, sisters, aunts and uncles on your maternal and paternal branches.
It’s likely that you also have a natural sense of responsibility toward your family, your kin. You would likely give them the shirt off your back, if they needed it.

It’s no stretch of my imagination to consider members of nations also, as kin, in the same way. Although it’s far easier, and common to perceive people of another nationality as outsiders, there are moments in which we do seem to recognize that we share the same human lineage, and treat one another as brothers and sisters of different mothers. Natural disasters exemplify that scenario, and in the wake of Japans recent events, many of us have had the compunction to assist in any way we can. As Americans, monetary assistance is the help we like to give.

With the threat of a nuclear disaster however, it’s hard to see how monetary help alone can help deal with the potential of radiological fallout near the reactors. Today, the Japanese have officially reached out to the U.S., their brothers across the ocean for help in dealing with the atomic energy crisis. This problem seems to demand a global/family effort to help resolve.

In the outset of this post I called for you to think about your own families. If you’re old enough, there’ll definitely come a time that you’re called upon to offer significant support to a relative, whether it be emotional, or financial support. And because we’re family, we have a natural motivation to invest in our kin, and to help them in any way possible. It may not always be the easiest thing to decide to do, especially when we’re struggling ourselves; but any selfish thought is usually stifled by the realization that by helping your folks, you’re contributing toward the collective good of your family, and also investing in your own welfare.

The appeal to our collective good shouldn’t only extend as far as our immediate relatives, but it rarely seems to extend much further. The good of your neighbor, too, contributes to your well being. It’s likely that all nations who can lend a hand will recognize on some level, that the well being of Japan and of its people, is integral to the well being of our respective nation states. We’re a family spread across the Earth, and we have a responsibility to those needing a hand in getting back on their feet.

Also, don’t forget New Zeland, Haiti, Libya, Egypt, and Bahrain in their efforts to recover.

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