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Quotes About Humanity
War. Poverty. Crime. Hunger. With all of the injustices that exist in today’s world, it can be easy to lose faith in humanity. We may ask ourselves, “Why should we care if no one else does? Nothing ever seems to change or get any better, so we might as well accept the world as it is.”

Although it is important to acknowledge the existing injustices and view them as serious issues that need to be resolved, it is equally important for us to realize our own part in seeing those solutions become part of reality. The following quotes about humanity may explain and hopefully inspire us:

  1. “You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.” – Mahatma Gandhi
  2. “To deny people their human rights is to challenge their very humanity.” – Nelson Mandela
  3. “Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.” – Dalai Lama
  4. “An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
  5. “What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other’s folly – that is the first law of nature.” – Voltaire
  6. “World belongs to humanity, not this leader, that leader or that king or prince or religious leader. World belongs to humanity.” – Dalai Lama
  7. “When freedom does not have a purpose, when it does not wish to know anything about the rule of law engraved in the hearts of men and women, when it does not listen to the voice of conscience, it turns against humanity and society.” – Pope John Paul II
  8. “One way or another, we all have to find what best fosters the flowering of our humanity in this contemporary life, and dedicate ourselves to that.” – Joseph Campbell
  9. “The sole meaning of life is to serve humanity.” – Leo Tolstoy
  10. “During bad circumstances, which is the human inheritance, you must decide not to be reduced. You have your humanity, and you must not allow anything to reduce that. We are obliged to know we are global citizens. Disasters remind us we are world citizens, whether we like it or not.” – Maya Angelou
  11. “The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.” – Albert Schweitzer
  12. “The greatness of humanity is not in being human, but in being humane.” – Mahatma Gandhi

As these quotes about humanity reveal, it can be difficult to explain human nature, but that does not mean we should lose faith or hope in ourselves or others. The Borgen Project promotes the idea that we each have the power within ourselves to change the world, which is one of the most beautiful abilities of humanity.

– Meghan Orner

Sources: Brainy Quote, Good Reads
Photo: Flickr

syrian_refugees
According to the United Nations, more than nine million Syrians are in need of “urgent aid” and the United Kingdom will have “abandoned its humanity” if it does not open its doors to Syrian refugees, former Lib Dem leader Sir Menzies Campbell said.

The BBC reports that the U.K. has declined to join a U.N.-backed program to accept victims of the vicious Syrian civil war. Only 10 European Union member states have been willing to take part in the U.N.-led resettlement program.

In September 2013, a spokeswoman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees said: “Resettlement of refugees, whether formal resettlement or expedited location… is a vital and potentially life-saving tool for helping particularly vulnerable refugees.” Amnesty International has said E.U. leaders have “miserably failed” to provide a safe haven to Syrians.

Despite the fact it is believed more could be done, the U.K. has provided 320,000 people with food in Syria and in neighboring countries; 244,000 people have received medical assistance. Most of these citizens look forward to returning home as soon as it is safe to do so and protection is provided in the region. Sir Menzies Campbell of the U.K. suggested the government was afraid of political backlash from rising immigration levels.

Recent reports from The Guardian explain that Syrian government officials could face war crimes charges from the large amount of evidence smuggled out of the country showing the systematic killing of approximately 11,000 detainees, according to eminent international lawyers. The UN and independent human rights groups have documented abuses by both Bashar al-Assad’s government and the rebel forces. The difference between this evidence and the past 4 months is the large scale killings taking place now.

Professor David Crane, who indicted President Charles Taylor of Liberia at the Sierra Leone court during those war crimes, said “Now we have direct evidence of what was happening to people who had disappeared. This is the first provable, direct evidence of what has happened to at least 11,000 human beings who have been tortured and executed and apparently disposed of.”

Everyone who has been killed was photographed in a horrific manner. The Guardian says the reason for photographing the people who had been executed was twofold. The first reason is because of the photograph families do not have to see the body in person and the authorities are left out of the situation. The second reason is to confirm the orders to execute an individual were carried out.

With appalling conditions such as these transpiring in Syria, it is no wonder refugees are hastily leaving everything they have behind.

Lindsey Lerner

Sources: BBC, The Guardian
Photo:
JFJFP

war_photography_brooklyn
The newest collection at the Brooklyn Museum offers unapologetic effects of violence around the world in a new exhibit titled “WAR/PHOTOGRAPHY: Images of Armed Conflict and Its Aftermath.” The collection features works by 225 photographers from all walks of life including military members, commercial portraitists, journalists, amateurs and Pulitzer Prize winners.

Nearly 400 pieces are present in a variety of mediums such as prints, books, magazines, albums and photography equipment. The exhibit allows visitors to explore the evolving relationship between war and photography over the last 166 years.

Several iconic pieces are present including Joe Rosenthal’s famous photograph of solders holding up the American flag on the battlefield in Iwo Jima and Robert Clarks’s images of the destruction of the World Trade Center.

Unknown works like “Valentine with her daughters Amelie and Inez” offer new perspectives on continuing issues of violence. In the photo, Valentine stands in front of a house with two young girls, her arms wrapped around one.

The image depicts the struggles of Rwandan women during the early nineties, when instances of violence and rape swept the region. The two girls with Valentine are her daughters, one conceived through marriage, the other by rape.

Other images in the collection show the endurance of humanity in the face of endless violence such as Mark A. Grimshaw’s First Cut, which illustrates an American soldier cultivating a small patch of grass in the middle of the harsh Iraqi landscape.

Some works, on the other hand, are simply heartbreaking as in the case of W. Eugene Smith’s “Dying Infant Found by American Soldiers in Saipan,” June, 1944 depicting a soldier holding the baby in his arms as another soldier watches on.

Rather than a strictly historical account of past wars, the organizers of the exhibition aim to not only reflect the effects of violence in the world but also, explore the connection between violence and photography. The exhibit’s curator, Anne Tucker explains that despite the sheer volume of images and variety of locations, certain patterns are evident in the type of photographs produced from such occurrences.

Those interested in learning more about the collection can visit the Brooklyn Museum website or visit the exhibit in person until February 2.

– Jasmine D. Smith

Sources: The New York Times, Brooklyn Museum

Top Ten Most Searched People Google Morgan Freeman
Who is the world intrigued with? Look no further than the top searches on Google. The top 10 searched for people provides a very interesting sampling of who represents humanity.

1. Whitney Houston. She became a beloved artist, actress, producer, and model. Guinness world records called her the most awarded female of all time. In later years she had a drug problem but recovered. She was posed to become the next judge on the show “The X-Factor” and revive her career right before she died.

2. Kate Middleton. She is a modern day Cinderella. Now Kate has been voted number one on the Vanity Fair’s best dressed list for three years in a row. Before she won the prince’s heart, she was considered simply “a beautiful commoner.” Today she works closely with five charities which mainly work with children.

3. Amanda Todd. Released a YouTube video about how she was bullied before she committed suicide. The video went viral and is now used to support anti-bullying movements.

4. Michael Clarke Duncan. Became famous when appearing in “The Green Mile” which won him an Academy Award nomination. He was an avid advocate for PETA. Michael died at age 54.

5. One Direction. Popularized by the show “The X-Factor,” the boy band has sold over seven million records. The teenage heart throbs are avid advocates for the organization Comic Relief.

6. Felix Baumgartner. Broke the world record height for sky diving. During his decent, he became the first person to break the sound barrier without using mechanical power.

7. Jeremy Lin. A lesser known professional basketball player until he led a winning streak for the New York Knicks.

8. Morgan Freeman. He acts, directs, and narrates. Some of his recent films include Oblivion, Now You See Me, and The Dark Knight Rises.

9. Joseph Kony. Leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army. He was made famous by an Invisible Children documentary that went viral.

10. Donna Summer. Known as the “undisputed queen of the Seventies disco boom.” Four of her singles topped the billboard chart within a thirteen month period. She held five Grammy Awards.

How can this diverse group of people be summarized? They usually come from the entertainment business. The good outnumber the bad. They are overwhelmingly represented in the media. When given power or influence most chose to represent the underprivileged and fight for inequality. Many gain a following in the wake of their death. Their lives read like a very dramatic story. The kind of story that gets them on the top ten Google searched list.

– Nicole Yancy
Sources: Biography, Wonder’s List, Fox News, E Online
Photo: LoL Forum