The Bystanders

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(Photo credit: Flickr)

Today marked the 7oth year of the liberation of that notorious death trap in Poland, Auschwitz. It’s a solemn day for the 300 hundred survivors who attended. Roman Kent, who gave a very moving speech where he implored people not to become bystanders, those words stood out for me. The word struck a chord in my heart, and I realise that by and large, we could be guilty of being a bystander.

We can do more to make the world a better place, but rather, we sometimes turn our eyes away, thinking, ‘it’s not my problem, I’ve got enough of my own.’ True, we all have one baggage or the other tied to our tired gait, but if every human on this planet (minus ISIS, Hezbollah, Al Qaeda, Boko Haram  and all those crazed lunatics prancing about killing innocent people in the name of their blood sucking god, they relish in murders anyway), decides to stamp out evil, malice, hatred and our differences, we would be living in a crime-free world indeed.

I don’t want to be a bystander, I really don’t. If we all feel like that, maybe, there would be a chance that the world would prevent another near annihilation of innocent people.

For this post not to be an irony, I have to state categorically that Auschwitz is practically repeating itself all over the world. Killings of civilians continue unabated while the world looks on unperturbed. If I were to be the president of the world, I would abolish all weapons of mass destruction. However, since I am not, and would never be, I think I would be able to abolish hatred on my street.

Spreading a little love around need not bring any ills to the giver, and while I go to work daily afraid of a bomb going off by a crazed Jihadist, I still have hope that one day, all that ails the world would soon be forgotten.

I know we can’t choose where we come from but we can choose where we go from there.

I remain your loyal friend. 🙂

NP: I have missed several posts from some of you, please bear with me friends. This new adventure I’d recently embarked upon (writing two novels at once) makes me search for time, but I would find it and visit your lovely sites soon!

Much love, always! 🙂

47 comments on “The Bystanders

  1. ledrakenoir says:

    Some stories should never be forgotten.

    Some stories we should all learn from.

    As always, here a blogger worth visiting… 🙂

  2. A very moving post. We can all do better I guess. Killings could be stopped if we stopped making weapons of mass destruction but it’s big business and things are more complicated than that. I get where you’re coming from Seyi. The massacres in Rwanda, Syria, Iraq, Ukraine, Congo and several African countries could be stopped but like I said, the world moves on blood, people would continue to manufacture these weapons, there would always be restless souls. It’s a sorry state of affairs…

    • Seyi sandra says:

      I agree with you Christy. It’s a sorry state of affairs but a little love here and there can make a huge difference.

      • You’re right, love can actually make a different. I believe humanity is not lost, there is love out there, it just takes a while to find it. I think the problems we have now is suspicion. People are suspicious of motives behind actions, once that is out of the way, we would be in a better world.

      • Seyi sandra says:

        I think you’re right. We jump to profiling when we’re scared and we are so suspicious it’s tending towards paranoia. But we would get there, I’m positive of that. Thanks for your input and visits Christy!

      • You’re welcome Seyi! It’s a pleasure perusing your site. 🙂

  3. reocochran says:

    I am so glad you focused on this horrible atrocity. I had a grandmother who came from German as a child. She forbade us to talk about Germany since she was so ashamed of this terrible time. I had written in a post that this day was the anniversary of the “Death Camps” in a bits and pieces post, but did not write about it. You did a fine job in this summary.

    • Seyi sandra says:

      Thanks so much my friend. It was a dark time in Europe and the world. The world has moved on, albeit slowly to another series of mishaps. I hope we would not have a repeat of the horror of the holocaust. In total, over 50 millon people lost their lives in world war 2, war is ugly and costly.

      I appreciate your visit and comment dear friend!

  4. Awesome Seyi. Well done. Mojisola

  5. kirizar says:

    There is a plight of the bystander in a lot of situations. Often people don’t recognize their inaction for what it is. The rubber-neckers at an accident, the people who just stand around when someone chokes on something they swallowed and the people who listen to the sounds of domestic violence in neighboring homes without calling the authorities reflect the human tendency to want to observe without actually getting involved. It isn’t a pretty facet of human nature but it can be balanced by the innate goodness people can also demonstrate. Towns that pull together to set up sand bags in a hurricane, people who throw themselves into a burning building to save other lives with no thought of risk to themselves, the basic human kindness we can feel toward the displaced or suffering are also human nature. The difficulty lay in determining which side of our nature will win out.

    • Seyi sandra says:

      Thanks for your visit and comment dear Kirizar. You were right on all counts. Sometimes, people had to be galvanised into action after they had realised their inaction. And sometimes, it’s just born out of fear of getting involved, I’ve tried to help strangers in the past and I was rebuffed, yet I still believed that love is the way forward. Like you rightly observed, human nature is not bankrupt, it’s just finding out which side of our nature would eventually win out.

      We live in a complicated world. Once again, I’m grateful for your visit!

  6. Luanne says:

    Thank you for this, Seyi. I’m so sorry you live with that fear. We cannot just be bystanders.

    • Seyi sandra says:

      I use the underground often, and living in London, with the constant drumming into our ears of extremists who had gone to fight in Syria,; I tend to look over my shoulder often or stared at suspicious looking blokes with bulky bags. Especially if they fitted the description of the ISIS caliphate. Terrorists had attacked London underground before, I hope they won’t succeed again. Thanks for stopping by Luanne!

  7. Reblogged this on Clear Stream of Reason and commented:
    Nice Article… Reblogging this one…Though I would rephrase the part that terrorism is not only of Jihadist type..I abhor all types of religious extremism….Seen all around the world in different variations Buddhist…Christian..Hindu & Islamic… Live and let live is the need of the hour….

    • Seyi sandra says:

      Thanks for your visit, comment and Reblog. Terrorism of today is largely based on Islam, although humans are the ones carrying out the dastardly acts. Unfortunately, religion still played and is still playing a huge part in the world today. Some people would not want others to live, it’s just the way the world works. But love does work miracles, regardless of race, religion or beliefs, love is the only way out of wars and hatred.

  8. We think alike, Stella. We can spread love along our streets. 🙂 But meanwhile, Auschwitz, and the Holocaust we will never forget!. Powerful post dear sis. 🙂

    • Seyi sandra says:

      You’re right Celestine (you called me Stella again dear 🙂 ) I agree with you, I don’t think we should forget the Holocaust and the millions who perished alongside the Jews. Appreciate your visit my sis! 🙂

  9. your words resonate — great post

  10. Hermionejh says:

    I wholeheartedly agree, and as much as I can protest against terrorists, hate-mongers, and my own hostility or self-righteousness, being more loving more of the time is best. I try to ‘walk my talk’ in my life, but sometimes it’s very hard to have hope for humanity. Cheers to you, and happy writing on your novels!

  11. Mainline says:

    It is the way of the World. Rather than offer ourselves as post-modern martyrs that die in vain; we should live with Christ. Not advocating ‘democracy’ nor secularization, but reigning with the Lord’s Dominion. Unfortunately Protestantism has wondered; and until it atones for committing suicide the world will suffer.

  12. Mainline says:

    It is the way of the World. Rather than offer ourselves as post-modern martyrs that die in vain; we should live with Christ. Not advocating ‘democracy’ nor secularization, but reigning with the Lord’s Dominion. Unfortunately Protestantism has wondered; and until it atones for committing suicide the world will suffer.

    • Seyi sandra says:

      Well said. Christ makes a lot of difference in the world today, we just need to work harder as believers. I hope, as a Christian, I would be able to make my impact felt.
      Thanks for your comment and visit.

  13. Maggielola says:

    “I don’t want to be a bystander, I really don’t. If we all feel like that, maybe, there would be a chance that the world would prevent another near annihilation of innocent people.”

    I am convinced that if I don’t take the initiative to champion a desired change in my community, somebody else will. Thanks for the reminder!

  14. Zambian Lady says:

    It would be hard for me to forget about Auschwitz. There is a remembrance plaque at the main door of my apartment building here in Vienna from where children and adults were taken to Auschwitz and another camp. Just down the road from my apartment, is another remembrance with keys and locks for apartments in the area from where more people were taken to various camps.

    • Seyi sandra says:

      Oh my! That’s so tough! I’ve watched several World War 2 documentaries and it’s so sad that a single man could orchestrate the death of fifty million people (including the Jews). It’s good that we remember them, it’s part of history.

      Thanks for your visit and comment. Apologies for my just replying now, I was ill for almost a week! Do enjoy the rest of this week!

  15. sandrabranum says:

    I pray that peace on earth and good will toward man become a reality. Amen.

  16. Ste J says:

    It is amazing how the world doesn’t learn and history repeats itself. Hatred keeps certain people in power and idiots believe what they are told, it is a sad state of affairs. If education was of a better standard and people had love and respect for one another then there would be a difference. In the end we have to take responsibility as a race and look beyond the propaganda.

    • Seyi sandra says:

      I agree with you Ste J. Hatred plays a major part in the way most countries in the world are run, and until love could be inculcated in the constitutions of most nations on earth, I’m afraid, wars, and rumours of war would be a common occurrence.

      I apologise for my late response, I was ill for the better part of last week. Thanks for stopping by my friend.

  17. Thoughtful post, I agree if there were no weapons how different the world would be! But war seems to be a huge business with hate being the main marketing strategy.

  18. Well said, Seyi. Romans 12:9 came to mind after reading this excellent post: “Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good.”

  19. RoSy says:

    I just can’t wrap my head around such hatred. Peace seems so simple. Yet – so much hunger for power & greed seems to always take over many souls.

    All the best to you as you take on writing two novels at once.

  20. ARvWD says:

    Do what you can. Don’t despair over what you can’t. And thanks for the like …

  21. frizztext says:

    “…is practically repeating itself all over the world. Killings of civilians continue unabated while the world looks on unperturbed…” – though there is a difference between killing peaceful people like doing a factory job (Auschwitz); but I hope that deep in the today’s terrorists’ mind some day will appear a big doubt..

  22. Paul J. Stam says:

    Good to hear from you again even if it is only a “like” of one of my posts. But it is hard to concentrate on writing and also post regularly.
    I remember seeing the first pictures of the liberation of the concentration camps. We hope and pray that mankind will never forget, but will mankind ever change? – As Lord Acton said, “Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” – Thanks again, Seyi, and Aloha – pjs/

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