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Frieslander
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13 Mar 2011, 2:03 pm

With all this talk of meltdowns, you'd think there were a bunch of Aspies in Japan.

Seriously, though, the tragedy is overwhelming. 10,000 dead now, and the toll rising.


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bethmc
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13 Mar 2011, 2:29 pm

I have an awareness of the dire circumstances, but I just can't subject myself to the reports. It's too overwhelming and I will spiral into an emotional overload - it's happened all too many times in my life during the media bombardment of tragic events.

It's not that I don't care - it's that I care too much.

Compounding this problem is the fact that I also feel completely helpless - if it were an event that were happening to people close to me, closer to home, I would be able to find a practical way to help, to help to carry/ease the burden - and that would help me to cope.

This whole notion goes against the stereotypical Aspie - if there even is such a thing - although you have to admit that many researchers traditionally believe that all Aspies tend to be unemotional, lacking in empathy, lacking in sympathy, cut off from emotions, etc., etc., etc., which I find to be a load of crap, but hey, that's just my belief.


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CockneyRebel
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13 Mar 2011, 2:34 pm

I've also been thinking about our Japanese brothers and sisters who are on the spectrum. It's very sad.


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13 Mar 2011, 2:59 pm

I switch off during all reports of natural disasters, and I don't think it's that I don't care, but I really don't understand the pathos that comes with the reporting of them.

For example, I've never really understood the expression "Our thoughts are with..."

But I will say I hope that other countries are able to move swiftly to the aid of the Japanese and help relieve their suffering at this time.



Simonono
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13 Mar 2011, 3:10 pm

It's very shocking. I came in from college on friday to see the news saying there was expected to be around 300 deaths, and now they have confirmed there is many thousands. And in time, there will be many, many more thousands.

It's up to those who have the job of helping the Japanese, to properly help them. You could say I don't understand how difficult it would be to help them. Well, fly me over there and I'll help :). I'm just saying barely anything was done on Haiti after their earthquake last year :evil:



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14 Mar 2011, 3:08 am

Frieslander wrote:
With all this talk of meltdowns, you'd think there were a bunch of Aspies in Japan.

Seriously, though, the tragedy is overwhelming. 10,000 dead now, and the toll rising.


Overwhelming, the very word for it. I check back with the news periodically and have to stop. I waffle between wanting to stay aware in case specific help is requested and being afraid to see more... I sometimes wonder in the middle of a bite of food how many people are without it right now...

I guess it's foolish because the whole planet has had people who were hungry. A week ago there were hungry people, frightened people, people who lost everything. There's just that extra bit of shock in a country so settled and civilized, and in many ways like the States where I live, cities that survived very nicely the huge earthquake (all things considered) but were then washed off the land like so many soap bubbles...

So, like bethmc, I have to avoid the news. I was, like so many people, way too engrossed in the news in late 2001. I was very pregnant that September, which can't have helped. I swore off the news for a long time. People look at you strangely when you say that, though I avoid mentioning it. I guess they don't understand how anyone could not keep up with the news. But in times of disaster I overload. And the rest of the time, there seem to be a thousand stories about child murders. For some reason, I find it hard not to read them when I see the headline. So I try not to see the headline.


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14 Mar 2011, 4:06 am

I think I'm going to sound like the cruel one here and get flamed and baited after this. I am fully prepared for the s**t storm this comments is going to make.
Who cares? Honestely, so sad the Japanese died. It teaches two things, don't build your homes near the coast. And two, its a natural disaster they occur all the time. It happened miles away to other people and I shouldn't let that affect my life. Natural disasters occur and are a natural part of this earth to ween and cull the population. If the African Lion heard about the Asian Lions being in a grass fire, the African Lion wouldn't care. Because the fire hadn't hit his home and he needs to worry about his own survival.
I know most don't want to hear me compare us to lions or other animals, but big news people we are animals. We shouldn't live in paralyzing fear for something happening miles away. And we shouldn't live our lives on "maybes" "ifs" and "what ifs". Survival is key. They died. So what. Get back to your life, you survived your the stronger animal.



Callista
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14 Mar 2011, 4:48 am

Pandora_Box wrote:
I think I'm going to sound like the cruel one here and get flamed and baited after this. I am fully prepared for the sh** storm this comments is going to make.
Who cares? Honestely, so sad the Japanese died. It teaches two things, don't build your homes near the coast. And two, its a natural disaster they occur all the time. It happened miles away to other people and I shouldn't let that affect my life. Natural disasters occur and are a natural part of this earth to ween and cull the population. If the African Lion heard about the Asian Lions being in a grass fire, the African Lion wouldn't care. Because the fire hadn't hit his home and he needs to worry about his own survival.
I know most don't want to hear me compare us to lions or other animals, but big news people we are animals. We shouldn't live in paralyzing fear for something happening miles away. And we shouldn't live our lives on "maybes" "ifs" and "what ifs". Survival is key. They died. So what. Get back to your life, you survived your the stronger animal.
In evolutionary terms, we moved past simple survival as individuals long ago. Now we survive as cultures, as groups of people, and through the passing on of information, customs, and philosophies.

Survival of the fittest is all very well for individual creatures who pass on little or no knowledge to the next generation. But humans are not like that. We live in integrated groups in which everyone has specialized and everyone contributes his part. Cultures compete, spread, grow, and shrink depending on which culture is most successful in spreading its ideas.

Japan, for example, has a culture that allowed the people there to react with relative calm to the earthquake and aftershocks. They have an organized system that allows them to build cities which can withstand earthquakes relatively well; and as a result, they have a great deal more shelter and many more hospitals than they would otherwise have. They also have relationships to other cultures which are quite friendly, and these ties have spread information about their situation and their needs, so that people from other cultures care about them and are helping them.

So... unlike what you seem to think, Pandora, the opposite is actually the case. Japan is a very "strong animal" indeed. They will recover and they will repair the damage and re-integrate into a cooperative group.

Survival is not key. Survival is one factor among many. The human being is unique among animals in that, unlike lions, if the African Human hears about the Asian Humans being killed, the African Human will care and want to help. We do not need to see someone being hurt right in front of us; and we do not need to have that person be someone we know or someone we are related to. We can simply pass on the information that "Someone is hurt; someone needs help," and then we can mobilize ourselves on a large scale to protect that person.

Because we can protect weaker members rather than abandoning them, we do not lose their contribution; and because we do not lose their contribution, it is passed on and builds an even better culture than before. The ability to protect those who are weak or in trouble, even when we are neither related to them nor mirroring their emotions, is part of what makes our entire species so strong.


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Pandora_Box
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14 Mar 2011, 5:01 am

[quote="Callista"]................snip/quote]

All I am saying is that people shouldn't live in paralyzing fear over something that hasn't happened to them.

Live with your lives.



Callista
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14 Mar 2011, 5:06 am

Paralyzing fear? I'm halfway across the world. I'm not in any danger.

What I feel most of all is a desire to set this right. I want Japan to recover and rebuild and find their lost and mourn their dead and become stronger for this experience. I don't know very much about Japan and I have never been there, but what I do know is that these are people who are living their own lives and looking out at the world through their own eyes, just like me. People are their own little universes, and each one is unique and precious. I don't want the world to lose these people, even though I don't know them. They are irreplaceable.


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dunbots
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14 Mar 2011, 5:09 am

Pandora_Box wrote:
Callista wrote:
................snip


All I am saying is that people shouldn't live in paralyzing fear over something that hasn't happened to them.

Live with your lives.

I agree with everything you said.

I like this guy. :D



wavefreak58
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14 Mar 2011, 6:22 am

Pandora_Box wrote:
I know most don't want to hear me compare us to lions or other animals, but big news people we are animals. We shouldn't live in paralyzing fear for something happening miles away. And we shouldn't live our lives on "maybes" "ifs" and "what ifs". Survival is key. They died. So what. Get back to your life, you survived your the stronger animal.


So then, like the animals we are, we should cast off those less able to care for themselves. Like maybe those with autism.


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Musician999
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14 Mar 2011, 6:31 am

So then, like the animals we are, we should cast off those less able to care for themselves. Like maybe those with autism.[/quote]

Good point



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14 Mar 2011, 6:37 am

Callista wrote:
Paralyzing fear? I'm halfway across the world. I'm not in any danger.

What I feel most of all is a desire to set this right. I want Japan to recover and rebuild and find their lost and mourn their dead and become stronger for this experience. I don't know very much about Japan and I have never been there, but what I do know is that these are people who are living their own lives and looking out at the world through their own eyes, just like me. People are their own little universes, and each one is unique and precious. I don't want the world to lose these people, even though I don't know them. They are irreplaceable.


wavefreak58 wrote:
So then, like the animals we are, we should cast off those less able to care for themselves. Like maybe those with autism.


Both of these. It's hard for me to not care. I'm not afraid of anything because of disasters like this, I know there is little to nothing I can do about them, but I don't think of people as faceless crowds, but as individuals. While I do not know what they were like, I know what the people who are in my daily life are like, and I do not think there is any difference in terms of worth and meaning, and every person lost is tragic.

I am not able to switch that off, or logic it away (nor do I agree with any logic that does) and I don't want to switch it off.



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14 Mar 2011, 7:23 am

Japan has been one of my favorite countries for years, so I have been quite dismayed over what has happened. I'd love to donate money to the Red Cross so that I can feel like I'm helping in some manner. I don't think I can, though.


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