This past weekend was the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic. 1,514 souls perished in a few hours. I have been watching some of the presentations offered on television this week. What sticks in my mind is not so much the loss of life, but the disrespect for life. I wonder if those who died had known in advance what was in store for them all would they have still been so concerned with class differences?
Third class passengers could not speak to, let alone mingle with, any other class. They were treated as if they had a contagious disease that might spill over to the rest of the ship. I found it interesting that the survival list included two dogs. Perhaps it was God's way of reminding us that life is life and no one is more important than anyone else.
I listened to interviews of a couple of the survivors. One was a man among those rescued from a lifeboat by the RMS Carpathia, who said, "We didn't know each other so we couldn't get in conversation". Since they were all going through the same life and death experience I would think they would have enough in common to speak to each other. Another interview was with a woman who viewed the voyage before the ship struck the ice burg as stiff and very uncomfortable. What an understatement that was.
Many of the lives lost could have been prevented if those in charge had taken the time to care about the safety of the passengers and provided enough life boats and given proper instructions. I am trying to imagine how it would feel to be on deck making the decision to jump into the icy water or stay on board and go down with the ship. I hope I never have to experience something like that.
All those lives lost bring my thoughts to the more recent disaster of 9/11. At least death for the most part was quick. There were many heroes around that day who did care and risking their own lives saved the lives of others, no matter who they were.
I would like to think we have grown in a positive way in the last 100 years. Maybe in the next 100 years we will actually reach the point of realizing that, although different, we all came from the same source. We are one whatever the color of our skin or the path we have chosen to walk.