Away with the Statistics!

I don’t know about you but I’m sick and tired of statistics. I’m frustrated with the numbers that describe human casualties all over the world. Whenever disaster strikes, as it almost always does, our pain is submerged in the statistics. The numbers seem to take away our individual grief and we just seem to move on. Away with the statistics! Stop using numbers! Give us the names of the individuals; every single one of them that we have lost to the insensitivities of mankind. When will men stop slaughtering men in the name of inter-tribal, inter-religious conflicts? Away with the numbers, give us names!

It has reached a tipping point for me; over these last few weeks, I’ve been dazed with numbers. Everywhere I turn to, there are numbers; the numbers seem to follow me, while the vast majority of the numbers are mathematical calculations, the other divide presents unfortunate accounts of man-induced disasters. It is very painful to me every time I read that 30 people have been slaughtered mercilessly in the perpetually volatile northern region of Nigeria, or that 15 people have been victims of a building collapse in Lagos. But somewhere beyond these ‘mild’ statistics, reports show that about 13,000 people have been victims of the ongoing Libyan crisis; and thousands more in Syria and all over the Arab world. What is mankind doing to mankind?

Somewhere in these statistics, we seem to lose our humanity. We cease to care. We fail to realize that these men, women and children were carried in the wombs of women for nine months each and nursed by good people such as ourselves. These were people born with the same inalienable rights to life, liberty and a pursuit of happiness that we enjoy. Since when was it cool to kill? How much delight do we derive from the murder of a fellow human being? How much justice is served when life is snuffed out of a human in the pursuit of a better life or whatever cause? He who kills by the sword, gun, bombs or other form of artillery will surely be killed by much worse!

The most despicable explanation that can be given to man’s injustice to man is the gruesome murder of fellow humans in the name of God! Since when did God justify murder in his name? Even when the name of God is blasphemed, who (or what) are we to defend Him? We are but specks of dust before His Majesty; insignificant beings who pick up arms to defend His holy name. He who created us is strong and mighty enough to defend His name, but why would God pick up arms against the very beings He created to worship Him? Why then do we perform such contemptible acts in His name?

The statistics disgust me. I feel a pang of guilt, shame and distress every time numbers are employed in describing the loss of human life due to man’s unending foolishness. What will it take to bring this world to peace? How would we explain to these decidedly deaf, blind and unreasonable creatures of God that peace has never been enthroned by war? We need to come to a point of reasoning: this world needs education, mutual respect and reasonable dialogue. We need to aggregate more around our commonalities and less around our differences. Our diversity which seems to be so pronounced and comfortably seated at the heart of all conflict was enthroned by God himself. He is the one who created all things and declared them beautiful.

We need to stop murdering and hurting people in the name of God; it is the wrong thing to do! I’m sick of the statistics! Lives are being lost needlessly! I’m sick of the numbers! Away with the statistics!

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