Thu, Nov 29, 2007 - Page 8 News List

LETTERS: Prioritize aid, not politics

Here's a hypothetical situation. If my son is involved in a car accident and he dies because I refused to allow an African doctor to treat my son because I am racist, what responsibility do I carry for my son's death?

I am sure everyone would agree that I must bear some of the responsibility, since my freedom to choose should not interfere with my son's freedom to choose or his basic human rights, including the right to life.

Bangladesh has declined to accept aid from Taiwan even though thousands will die from the recent cyclone. This isn't a little political game. People's lives are at stake and politicians are playing the "who is our friend and who isn't" game.

If one person dies that should have, and could have, been saved by additional aid refused by Bangladesh, then the Dhaka government is directly responsible for that person's death, not Mother Nature.

The refusal to allow assistance to someone whom you cannot offer assistance to yourself borders on culpable homicide.

Bangladesh does not have to recognize Taiwan as a country, but the time to discuss that is not now. Now is the time to save people's lives.

Gerhard Erasmus

Yungho, Taipei County

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