The word prompt for todays haiku from haiku heights is ‘Paradox‘. Where to start? Media, Medicine, Religion…
Outrage on front page,
adverts inside, profits from
sinister sex trade.
My blood boils when I buy a local family newspaper such as the recent Gloucestershire Echo. On the front page they gloat and pontificate, taking the moral high ground, over the police storming local brothels. Men and women were arrested, masses of money was seized and young foreign girls who were victims of illegal trafficking were rescued and taken away. Yet, inside the same newspaper, albeit near the back, were lurid adverts for the services provided by these same establishments. Is this double standards ~ Yes! Is this hypocrisy ~ Yes! Is this paradoxical ~ Yes!! Should I stop buying the newspaper ~ Yes! Should I start a campaign ~ I know I should……but will it change anything…?
Nurses come nightly,
tenderly numbing his pain
Killing him kindly.
The world of medicine is riven with paradoxes concerning treatments for prolonging life, saving life, ending life. Decisions and actions can have monumental consequences. There will always sadly be some people who misuse their position, skills and knowledge to cause harm to themselves or others. But for the most part the medical staff we meet are caring people trying to alleviate suffering who have to live with their conscience, and their choices .
Sadly the most glaring paradoxes are to be found in the world of ‘religion‘. I listened to a wonderful “Thought for the day” on BBC Radio 4 today about just this. Canon Dr Alan Billings talks about how the individual’s faith and religious practice can be a very good and positive thing; but collectively, due to desire to protect and preserve ‘their’ values and traditions, hierarchical religious communities can act in damaging, destructive and downright wicked ways. I think of the dreadful cover-ups of child abuse, of the unjust and insensitive treatment of women or anyone who does not conform to the perceived ‘norm’, and of course the killing and maiming carried out in the name of religion. It always comes down to a desire by those in positions of power to subjugate those without it.