Thursday, August 31, 2006

What matters

With regard to my post below, there is another thing that does concern me. For all the hooh-hah that can be kicked up about Africa, for all the accusations of Western Imperialism; of African corruption; of creeping Islamism, the elephant in the room remains. People do notice it, they wear little red ribbons to show how much they care about it, but achingly little is done.

When I was in Zambia a few years ago I used to make occasional visits to an orphanage to play football with the kids (all the staff were nuns, so they didn't get much contact with men). In a country of 10-11 million there were an estimated 2 million orphans, the overwhelming majority through AIDS. Most heartbreaking of all are the infected AIDS orphans: born to a life of no hope and little but misery. This piece by Karen Little, a South African doctor, really gets to the pathos of the whole thing.

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