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Time to re-examine an old debate? / 13 April 2015

Liz Crow crouched on the stoney Thames foreshore sculpting small clay figures

“Each figure is sculpted with huge attention to detail. #WeAreFigures”

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The overwhelming impression I get from the personal stories that accompany Liz Crow's 'Figures' is the shocking lack of humanity, the lack of compassion for vulnerable people.

Some years ago there was a lot of debate about the danger of losing our human values to soulless computers. If ever this was a political concern it has been forgotten or ignored. 

People's lives are being reduced to tick-forms that can be processed by computers; empathy, kindness and vulnerability have become foreign concepts.

They are in fact qualities essential for becoming the best human beings we can aspire to be. Vulnerability is a dirty word in politics, but it is essentially the quality that makes us truly human and allows us to offer and accept love.

Devoid of empathy, kindness,
vulnerability; it comes.
The political choice...
and who does not speak out;
like when they came for the Jews.
We might not be literally Jews 
but some of us feel the fear.
And all those poppies flooding the stronghold;
what did we learn? Or was that
just emotional manipulation?
Do we look to history with other
than relief? It's over.
How much noise have we made 
in the current fight...
when they come for disabled people...
disadvantaged people...when they come
for community, creativity; the superfluous arts?
The stuff that makes life more than mere existence.
So easy to sit like frogs in cold water
not letting the rising temperature
disrupt the hunger for good news, 
destroy the hope of arriving somewhere safe.
Forgetting that life is how you live the journey;
safe is dead. Passing illusion. The challenge
is to live your life being the best human being you can possibly be.
doing your bit for the human race. The place
where every life does matter, good or bad,
better or worse, one heartbeat or a century.
Where every single life is needed for one complete race.