reprimanding our morality

Republished from a response to "Western civilization is morally superior". In the article Rev. Donald Sensing responds in shock to middle- and upper-class Indonesian ambivalence by pointing his fingers at us and shouting "For Shame!"

First of all I'd like to say that I do not mean this to be a defence of Indonesian morality. Its just a statement of some observations.

If you see and smell rotting bodies everywhere every day twenty-four hours a day for the past few weeks, do you still want to think about rotting bodies?

An awful lot of Acehnese are already clinically insane. The rest of us can just turn off the TV, the radio, disconnect the Net and stop reading newspapers.

And as anyone living in Jakarta will tell you, New Year's Eve this year is very, very, quiet compared to last year. Yes there are some wild parties here and there, but the streets are pretty empty. We try to forget Aceh, but we can't.

It cuts deeper when we realise there's not much we can do either. Monetary donations get corrupted. Logistical donations rot at ports. Go to Aceh yourself for volunteer work and see how long you can stand the smell of rotting bodies. Some can stand it and do, but not enough.

It may seem cold that us Indonesians celebrated New Years, but a lot of us seek the diversion because we just can't take the graphic nature of the tragedy anymore. There is no excuse for turning a blind eye, yet we continue to do so because the flesh is weak.

What, you want us to curl up on the ground and weep constantly, wasting away our lives? You don't want us to move on? You want us to stand in place and rot? Or should we be apologizing 24-7 for our moral inferiority? You want to tell us how to handle our problems? How to act? How to think?

Why don't you invade us already and declare us the 51st state? Kill all our morally inferior leaders and elites! Turn us all into your slaves! You Aryans are all so superior anyway, you are all God's Messengers and Rulers of Humanity!

I should probably stop there.

Reading the article left me a little numb. The reverend is usually smarter than this. I thought it was a universal given that all humans practice selective attention and retention, especially to filter potentialy mind-destroying information. In hindsight perhaps I had been too hasty. The blog post most likely is just western culture-shock over our seemingly ambivalent nature.

A problem with blog posts (mine included) is that we tend to be soooo... reactionary, don't we:)

We're all humans. We can't be perfect until we arrive in heaven. You want bullet-proof moral logic, you gotta go directly to the source. Any less and you encounter noise.

Posted at 11:37:30 am by ferdikom98

January 15, 2005   09:43 PM PST

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I don't write intellectually. I write expressively. I don't claim to be accurate, fair or thorough. I don't wanna get stuck on certain topics. Though I sometimes do. But not that often. I'd like to expand. I wanna write more poems. But I'll only upload them if they're good. I only rant about my life's hardships if it will rescue just a little bit of my sanity. I'm saner than I make myself out to be, though.

If I am an OS kernel, and I just had a kernel dump, I'd imagine that the text in this blog is what it would more or less look like.

There. Do you get it?


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