Off Topic Day!

So I know I’m wiped out from 12 hour shifts and such, but my mind is active now, thinking about things unrelated to what I’m reading about Paul these days. I just read an article from Reuters about Sudan and the coming potential for revolution in Arab Spring form, and now I’m trying to imagine what that would look like, as well as what the US could do in such a situation.  This kind of evolved more into a “what role DOES The US play in the world theatre?” kind of question.

Here’s what I read, here’s the summary: apparently, after South Sudan seceded from Sudan, Sudan’s in a big economic downturn, losing about 75% of its oil production, and people aren’t happy.  Not just because of the oil, mind you, but for a lot of the same reasons that the Arab Spring occurred, and the popping up of demonstrations across the country has some people thinking there might be an Arab Spring in Sudan.

Here’s what that article got me thinking about: the Arab Spring always gets me excited. Always.  Ask me about what I think about what went down/is going on in Egypt, Tunisia, and other parts of Africa and the Middle East, and I will gush with talk of nonviolent revolution happening in our time and not just in our history books (It happened; look it up).  The fact that it spread so quickly got me even more excited, and the fact that there were attempts (however aimless they tended to be) here in the US got me triply excited. Seeing it potentially spread to Sudan, a war-torn, broken country desperately in need of help, warms my heart as well.

Now, for those of you who think this is a book review blog, it is, but before that it was a blog about nonviolence and how we all need to be not so violent in our daily lives.  I got tired of writing about that, but it still gets me going. See, I believe people can, and one day will, stop resorting to violence and not only get along, but celebrate the diverse creation given to us by God and love one another.  Seeing the potential for this in Sudan makes me wonder about the entire Arab Spring, though.  At least, it makes me wonder what America could be doing about it.

See, America likes to ignore things that don’t benefit it.  Conflicts in Darfur and Rwanda that involved the raping and killing of innocent women and children, and the recruitment of child soldiers? Forget state acknowledgement, but we’ll let some nice celebrity take notice of your plight.  Iraq?  You have oil?  Here we come! We pretty much just aim to please ourselves as a country, and I’m a little sad about that, because we are a nation whose members have done some pretty amazing things in addition to some of the awful things we’ve done too.  I’m really not much of a patriot by some standards, but there’s a lot of things about America I do like, and I think we have a lot to offer to other countries about politics and economic work (despite some seriously awful mistakes in both departments).

The key I did pick up on, however, is remembering that everyone else has things to offer too. I don’t want to be that American who goes around acting like America is the best country around; that’s a little obnoxious. In my opinion, if we’d stop acting like college freshmen who think they’re so amazing because they made it to the big leagues, learned from our mistakes, and collaborated with others IF they want our help, we’d not only be an even better country, but also actually contribute to a better world, and I bet that, by setting that kind of example, we’d get some people on that bandwagon too.

So that’s my off-topic stuff for today.  I only work until 3, so, hopefully, I’ll be able to rest up and have a rousing post on Paul tomorrow!  Thanks for stopping by, folks!


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