Wednesday, 30 April 2008

What is wrong

There's been a lot in the press recently about Emmanuel Jal, the rapper from the Sudan who was a boy solider. I have listened to the music on MySpace and to be honest I didn't like it much but then I'm not a huge rap fan (except NWA's 'Express Yourself' and a few other old tunes from, as I believe the saying goes, back in the day...).

However, his is an interesting story and in the Guardian's piece on him I read a lovely quote from Jal - "Music is powerful. It is the only thing that can speak into your mind, your heart and your soul without your permission."

I've read a lot of sad stories in the papers this week and seen some odd stuff on TV ('Shrinkwrapped' with Gene Simmonds...what a mistake that was) and it was good to read a sentence like that - one with some content to it that didn't make me feel sad or disillusioned or tired. Of the sad stories I think the one that seems to have hit me the hardest was the one from last Thursday's 'Independent' (from 24th April - we always have a lot of old papers lying around and I get to them eventually..then wish I hadn't). The story was about a group of women from South Korea who were repeatedly raped by Japanese soldiers in the Second World War and who are fighting to clear their names (the Japanese government says they were prostitutes and they are referred to as 'comfort women', a name they hate). The details of some of the treatment they suffered just...what can you say...made me feel sick. I've known women who spend their whole lives getting over one incident of rape, never mind the kind of stuff this article referred to.

I've nothing else to say today. That's it.


Rachel Fox said...

Oh dear. See how easily we fall (very stable) beloved goes away for not even a whole week (to learn more about computers - how his head holds it all I don't know...oh yes I do, it's not full of all this stuff) anyway, away he goes and look at the kind of thing I'm writing.
And I'm talking to myself.
(No I'm not)
to fade

Colin Will said...

The Japanese national character is ... not like ours. I loved the country when I visited in 2003, I'm steeped in Japanese culture - art, poetry (not the music though), and I'm a wee Zen roshi from when I was a teenager. But they paper over their recent past, deny things that definitely happened, hunt whales. I think I understand them, then I know I don't.

Rachel Fox said...

There have been so many horrible things in the media recently...I suppose there always are it's just sometimes you notice it more, sometimes you can process it like just more information, sometimes you can't.
Another 'story' that is so depressing (amongst other things) is the young woman who was killed for being a goth in a park in the north of England. Not a new kind of story (I remember being a 'rocker' chased by skinheads in Darlington in about 1982) but still so terrible. Her life gone, her family's ruined, plus the young guy she was with... never mind all those young men in prison for so long and all the knock-on effects on their families...for what? For something they thought was a laugh?
Also a young guy was stabbed and killed in Montrose last week. Like I say, you know it's always going on...sometimes you can push it further back in the brain, sometimes you can't.