Walking into work, I usually glance at the NY Post headline before I pick up a Journal. Stepping off the elevator, I came to a halt in the hallway, as I was disturbed by the cover image on today’s paper. On the cover, US Journalist, James Foley, in an orange jump suit moments prior to his beheading by an Islamist terrorist group called ISIL. He first disappeared on November 22, 2012 in northwest Syria, as a freelance photojournalist, and was held captive. Seeing this insensitive cover of NYPost, disrupted the direction my blood flowed. I lost more than my appetite. It made me seriously question the world we are living in, and whether or not I would want to bring a child into a world, so deranged as the one we live in today.
The recent events taking place around the world, from Hamas terror, and airlines getting shot down, to innocent people getting gunned down in Ferguson and now James Foley’s murder. Whatever happened to live and let live? Why is there such a decline in respect for human life? What religion or political system can possibly allow this activity to exist?
Days like today are why I remember once actually avoiding the news on a regular basis. The horrors that occur around the world, like blood splatter on paper, make me feel like life in America is truly perceived as a bubble. Here we can decide what we want to participate in. To avoid the news, or be news junkies. Frankly, I don’t know what to do. Whether to tune in or tune out. Become an activist, or journalist, or bomb deactivator. Considering the world’s negative sentiment ratio, it can make any one individual feel overwhelmed perhaps in emotion alone — feeling helpless in the faces of such torrent evil. James Foley was a hero, his last words were, he just wished he’d had more time with his family.
He didn’t get to have that time.
Foley, 40, grew up in New Hampshire and was originally a teacher, at one point teaching prison inmates in Arizona, before attending the Medill school of journalism at Northwestern University. After graduation, his first assignment was as an embed with the U.S. Army’s 173rd Brigade and 101st Airborne Division in Afghanistan. Foley had been covering the Syria’s civil war for GlobalPost and Agence France-Presse (AFP) when he was allegedly pulled from the car he was traveling in to meet with a colleague and abducted at gunpoint. According to the Columbia Journalism Review, GlobalPost hired an international security firm for a ground level investigation in Northern Syria and along the Turkish border to locate him.*