I can’t sleep tonight. My brain doesn’t want to stop thinking. I’m mad, and I’m sad. On a French Television show, a journalist has been talking back and forth with a man from Aleppo for the past few months, I can’t remember exactly how long it’s been, but this has been going on for quite a while. Tonight on the show, they aired the Skype conversation between the two. The man explained the ever escalating situation; how he escaped last night’s bombing, how his friend’s mother had died. He wanted to call now, as “maybe it was the last time.”
This man is a hero.
He didn’t want to leave his town, and now he is dedicating his life to help his people, saving those who are trapped under demolished buildings. Yet, nobody is talking about it. I’m mad because I’m here, in my bed with my computer I was able to pay for because of a summer job I had in a comfortable office. I am safe in my city, in my country, despite what the media may say. I have food in my fridge, and a home that will probably never be destroyed by a bomb.
I’m mad because our politicians do nothing about all of this. Sure, they are not the ones bombing these people, but as the quote says “If you are neutral in a situation of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.” And that’s true, it is not enough to simply say that “we stand with the people suffering in Syria”. It is all meaningless when there are people are dying. And somehow, we are here discussing for days how shameful it is that one of our politicians doesn’t know the price of un pain au chocolat. I am mad because I feel so useless.
I wish that I could take all of these people away from this violence. I wish that I could bring their loved ones back to them. I wish that I could adopt all of these children left with nothing and make them food in my safe, warm kitchen. I wish that I could erase their memories which are filled with all of those horrible things that nobody should have ever seen. I know nothing about politics, but what I do know is we shouldn’t let people die without trying to do something…but I don’t know what I can do.
I remember one of the first conversation they had. The journalist asked Ismail (the man from Aleppo) what we, as simple french citizens, could do to help the Syrian people. He said, “talk about what is going on.”
Even when you feel powerless, remember that your voice is your strongest weapon.
Valentine is a 19 year old french girl studying communication. She loves traveling, writing, eating (but not necessarily cooking), reading, and watching YouTube videos in her bed while eating (yes, she really likes eating). She really enjoys music, and all kinds of art. She’s also questioning everything (her high school philosophy teacher would be proud), and can’t stand mean people. She could spend her life looking for the perfect Air BnB in every single city around the world, just in case she needs to go and has no time for planning. Her childhood dream was to become a journalist, to build houses for poor children and to save all the animals. Right now, she has no plan for the future, but she hopes to be happy and travel a lot.
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