Ghanaian Chronicle

The Dreadful World We Live In…

Date published: November 23, 2012

By Anthony Kwaku Amoah


“Our world is one of terrible contradictions. Plenty of food, but one billion people go hungry. Lavish lifestyles for a few, but poverty for too many others. Huge advances in medicine while mothers die everyday in childbirth…Billions spent on weapons to kill people instead of keeping them safe”-Ban Ki-Moon, U.N. Secretary-General (October 2011).

Awake! (October 2011, p.6) also says, “We live in difficult times. From all parts of the earth, we hear a steady stream of news describing calamities and social unrest” and queries, “Is there any special significance to the current world situation?”

It is a fact that our world is getting more terrible with time. Many lives and property are subjected to diverse forms of destruction, as a result of pestilence, natural disasters, war and human factors.

It is now common to see people perish through acute famine, poor hygiene and sanitation as catastrophes, like fires, earthquakes and tsunamis also rake away significant proportions of other lives and property.

This piece only seeks to remind readers of this horrific world so they can live in it well. We can not afford to lose more precious lives and property through avoidable deaths.

The October 2011 Awake! (p.27) states, “Despite medical advances, millions still die each year as a result of infectious diseases. International travel and the world’s growing urban population have increased the likelihood that disease outbreaks will spread rapidly.”

It’s being told that smallpox killed an estimated 300 million to 500 million people in the 20th century with the Worldwatch Institute reminding that during the past three decades, “more than thirty previously unrecognized diseases such as Ebola, HIV, Hantavirus, and SARS have emerged as new threats.”

A World Bank report on sanitation and hygiene has it that, “every day 6,000 children die from diseases associated with inadequate sanitation, poor hygiene, and unsafe water. Diarrhea alone kills one child every 20 seconds.”

The World Health Organization has warned of the rise of drug-resistant germs, saying: “The world is heading towards a post-antibiotic era, in which many common infections will no longer have a cure and, once again, [will] kill unabated.”

Famine caused more than 70 million deaths in the 20th century and continues to be a global problem. According to the UN, hunger is the world’s greatest health risk, and 1 in 7 people worldwide currently do not have enough to eat.

The World Disasters Report (2010) says: “Of all large disasters, seismic events have killed the greatest number of people in recent years,” where in ten years before 2012, the average increased to 28 earthquake disasters per year, with an average death toll of 67,954.

Hate-fueled genocide has also swept away many lives. Research shows that more than 740,000 people die as a result of armed crimes and conflicts.

We are also aware that an estimated 275 million children worldwide have so far suffered varied forms of domestic violence and abuse. What a scary world we live in!

Findings also say that people, who on the average, spend six hours daily watching TV can expect to live 4.8 years less than those who do not watch at all.

Listen to the British Journal of Sports Medicine: “Every hour of TV reduces a sedentary adult’s life expectancy by about 22 minutes.”

An artiste would tell you, we now live in a crazy world and so we need God’s protection. Man is almost besieged by misfortunes of all kinds.

Road accidents, sudden collapse of buildings on lives, ethnic clashes and general mortality are on the ascendancy.

Sometimes, there is the belief that our world is gradually coming to a close when everybody will have to give the Maker an account of their stewardship on earth. Matthew 24:7 informs that in the ‘last days’, “Nation will rise against nation”, with Luke 21:11 also informing that “In one place after another pestilences,” and so on.

There is an upsurge in heinous practices, such as rape, defilement, prostitution, abortion and same sex marriage. Society appears comfortable with abusive customs, like the Trokosi, female genital mutilation and witch camping.

Death is inevitable yet we must also try to protect our lives. Acts liable to risk our lives must be eschewed. There is the need for peace between nations, affordable and better health care, end of discrimination, plenty food and water, safe neighborhoods, a clean environment and social justice.

Ghana can not afford to scatter its fine democratic records, which it has maintained since 1992. The EC must, therefore, be helped to deliver on its mandate again in December.

NB: This article is dedicated to the loving memory of ex-Veep Aliu Mahama, who was buried just last Sunday, following his demise on November 16, 2012 at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital.

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