On Saturday night I was having a rather normal evening, a birthday braai, a few thousand pints of the delicious @mitchellsbrew and settling in to watch Spurs play Bolton in the FA Cup (not that I support either but you know how braai, football and beer go together.
You all no doubt know what happened from there . . .
As I watched the crying and anxious faces around White Heart Lane and the panicked commentating as the game was called off I go the most frightening feeling, like someone I knew had been struck down. Of course I don’t know him personally nor do I really support either side but when you watch as much football as we do you take for granted that there will be a game and a result and nothing more really will happen – to see someone die (granted he was resuscitated later) on the pitch is one of the most bizarre and frightening football experiences of my life.
As the discussion continued around the braai once the game was called off, one of the intelligent ones (that’s why he’s my co-STMer) brought up the very valid point – ‘why so much concern for him?’
At first I disagreed and couldn’t understand the question really (the fact that it was coupled with Weak Heart Lane didn’t help) but after thinking about it for the last few days and seeing the amount of tributes and support – which I think is absolutely awesome – I started to wonder the same.
In the last week alone we’ve seen gunmen in France mow down school children and teachers, violence erupt in Mali and the chaos in Syria continue. The amount of death and destruction following these is surely far more in need of support than one footballer in hospital? To make matters horrifically worse these are just three of the, literally, thousands of stories that caught the attention of the global news networks.
While I was certainly on the ‘Support Muamba’ campaign and think everyone deserves this kind of support I just cannot believe that we live in a world where atrocities have been going on in Africa and around the world for decades and yet we casually sweep them under the rug and write them off to barbaric regimes but yet the entire world comes out in support of one, relatively small, tragedy.
Somehow as frightening as it was to see a 23 year old lying life less on the football pitch I cant help but wonder where the global voice of support for the millions of men, women and children suffering through all kinds of tragic events is?