Friday, March 18, 2011

Japan's monster tsunami a 'wake-up call' to people : Raymond Anthony Fernando gives his views in The Catholic News

My letter on the above matter is published in The Catholic News. Look out for it  this weekend - Saturday 19th/20th March 2011.

Could massive destruction of the Earth and seabed be the cause of quakes and tsunamis?

I refer to the several reports in the media on the monster tsunami that hit Japan on Friday, March 11.

I am deeply saddened by the loss of lives, property and infrastructures. My heart goes out to the Japanese people, and I hope that many lives can be saved through rescue efforts. Undoubtedly, it is going to take years before the Japanese economy can recover.

The tsunami disaster that hit Asia in 2004 saw 230,000 people, including women and children, killed and the livelihoods of millions destroyed in over 10 countries. They have all perished in a most cruel way.

Despite God giving us such a beautiful world, man continues to pollute the environment. When God gave us this Earth, He created man in his own image and to be the custodian of all living things.

Despite this God-given role, almost every day, the newspapers are full of reports of wars, terrorists' bombings, power struggles, corruption and greed either directly affecting or insidiously taking control of our lives.

While there are wealthy countries in the world, there are still many countries in abject poverty that have increasing numbers of children that are homeless, hungry and have no education.

It is apparent that man has not been taking his responsibility seriously enough to ensure peace on Earth.

I am no engineer, but my gut feeling tells me that the massive pounding and hammering of bombs during raging wars and conflicts, nuclear testing and terrorists' bombings in many parts of the world, could cause much stress to the seabed, making it unstable. It is similar to volcanoes that erupt - too much stress and it will snap.

Such disasters also take their toll on the mind.

According to experts, by the year 2020, depression is going to become the second highest disability worldwide. This prediction is worrying.

However, we have also seen that out of such human tragedies, it is the milk of human kindness that has united people together, against the odds. It is encouraging to read of reports that 45 countries have stepped forward to help Japan in search and rescue missions.

Now, if only countries worldwide can adopt this positive attitude of supporting one another, we will definitely see a much more peaceful and happy world.

World leaders and politicians must not just tackle climate change, but must also go out of their way to find peaceful solutions to conflicts that may arise from time to time in many parts of the world.

Church leaders worldwide could also play a part in influencing politicians to be more tolerant in adopting peaceful resolutions to conflicts.

If this second tsunami is not a wake-up call, then I just don't know what is.

Raymond Anthony Fernando

Singapore 560601

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