(Original post by Nayred)
There have been so many recent disasters - Bangladesh Cyclones, Mexico Floods, Indonesian Mud Volcano, North Korea Floods, etc - that had far more casualties than Japan, yet the media keeps stressing as if this disaster is more important than any other. Prominent celebrities are even holding concerts to raise money for the victims. This is totally fine and the Japanese disaster is tragic but why is Japan so important?
(Original post by flying plum)
We were talking about this at work today, actually, because someone pointed out that 90,000 people died in the Sichuan earthquake and it barely made the 10 O'Clock news after the initial quake. The floods in Pakistan are generally considered to be the worst natural disaster of our generation, but had no where near the coverage of the 2004 Tsunami.
Our thoughts were that people have a particular fear about tsunami, maybe from horror movies. The almost anthropomorphism of the tsunami wave chasing us, and that horrible feeling of impending doom (the clip from 2004 of the person on the beach frozen solid in the face of the oncoming wave still haunts me a little). And perhaps there's also that bit of 'Western centricism'...we identify more with Japanese culture, being affluent, and can 'understand' it better, perhaps? There's also the element of 'sudden' and quick devastation - I think the death toll for the Pakistan floods was in the region of 1500, but over 14 million people were affected...but perhaps this isn't as 'shocking' as dramatic Tsunami footage, which has killed tens of thousands instantly?
Its because of the reactors...
Natural disasters happen 24/7 and people die. Nuclear power is a controversial topic in many western countries and as it happens the incident in Japan apparently has an impact on nuclear reactors. Fallout cannot be forseen if they melt down.
Just look at what effects this situation had on several countries already. For instance, in Germany from one day to the next the leading party changed their nuclear power policy by 180°. The party has actually been rather nuclear friendly but since the tsunami all talks with nuclear power plants have been ceased. It is nonsense ofcourse. Nuclear power plants are extremely safe and tbh an massive earthquake etc is just not happening in mid-europe.
The death toll didn't even come close to that of the 2004 Tsunami.
Death tolls aren't the only outcome of a natural disaster. 14 million people have been affected by the floods in Pakistan, and areas bigger than the UK are still metres underwater.
It is the largest natural disaster in terms of numbers of people affected - given the infrastructure and economic damage that may result from Japan, it may well change. My point was, the Pakistan floods were devastating, but I never really felt that they were reported in that way - and they've certainly dropped off the radar now for most people.
But in an age of visual media, that's understandable - the amateur footage of tsunami and exploding nuclear plants is more interesting. There is also the issue, as others have mentioned, of Japan being such a vital world economy. The fallout in Japan could be much more far-reaching than any thing else that's happened recently.
I think if it was china it may have been more economically devastating...what would happen to all the stuff that is "Made in China" :P
On a serious note again though, Japan has been affected by so much...it has devastating effects on the whole globe...
The nuclear reactors are still a threat...there may even be a fourth disaster to strike (earthquake, tsunami and nuclear reactors already)
it is sort of true tbf. Because it is a rich country we associate with it is deemed more important so the media get more involved. Sure, people mention haiti gettin a lot of coverage and this is true...and tbf the japan disaster is massive. A better example would be the new zealand earthquake, it killed a barely a hundred people and until the japan event superceded it it got as much coverage as the hait quake that killed a quarter of a million and far more coverage than the pakistan one that killed hundred thousand (this got f all). this is NZ...a very white country most of us could relate to..which is why it gets so much voerage sadly. its pretty shocking.
having said that, i think the people of japan/nz deserve more respect than haiti/pakistan. watch the news, the japanese are queing round the blocks in an orderly fashion to pick up their food, there has been no looting that i have heard of and people are trying to get on with their daily lives. in NZ you saw similar efforts. In haiti it just turned into a massive chimpout tbh...people behved in a totally different way. i dont wanna be racist, but cant help thinkin the fact they are all black had something to do with it.
(Original post by Inzamam99)
No, it definitely wasn't- it is very wrong to judge a disaster completely by the number of deaths. Theoretically, if a Tsunami came now and wiped the United Kingdom off the map but caused no deaths as all British citizens had been evacuated to France (only hypothetical)- what would be worse? 9/11 or that?
Hopefully god will send us an other crazy virgin to send you back to your land .
Every disaster is horrendous, it's soooo terrible for the poor ppl involved but it's difficult to decide which have priority. If every single disaster was covered in the media there'd be no room for 'celebrity' which tends to be what more Westerners are concerned with, and that makes money for the big bosses at the top
However, at the end of the day if there is no way of us to help them, it only makes us feel all the more useless and those poor ppl are just made a subject of as opposed to helped. It is a very difficult situation.
I presume Japan is highlighted because of the Radiation leaks and issues to do with ecomony - because at the end of the day, according to the World leaders, money is worth more than the cost of human Life.
It is really sad, but unfortunately the ppl at the top of the ladder are far too selfish to care - and they wont let those who want to help have the power to change that.