So That We Can Sleep Through the Night


“ Was I sleeping, while the others suffered? Am I sleeping now? Tomorrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of today?” —  Samuel Beckett

Some people might think it’s a plus to be able to sleep through anything, to not get woken up by the slightest of noises, or the movement of a partner tugging on covers in the middle of the night. But, then, that kind of person is a perfect candidate for dying by fire while sleeping, yes?

Seriously, pleasure — which, it seems, everyone is seeking — is great for obvious reasons… in the United States of Amnesia. And the ability to block out machete murders in Congo which are a function of one’s relationship to high tech gadgetry, which is dependent on the coltan and other minerals mined by…. Oh, how many times have you heard all this? My colleagues have certainly written about it incessantly, our looking the other way totally when it comes to the correlation between our being able to purchase one gadget after another and the immiseration of real people in the Congo, impoverishment, torture, murder, massacre and mind-bending immoral disfigurement. The DRC citizens spotlighted in the Sky News report about DRC children being maimed are not victims of the forces which are named by mainstream media outlets.

Alex Crawford, the journalist who — repeatedly — provides crunching, instructive reports from realms where most journalists recoil in horror from is simply not allowed to get into the sources of the bleeding in Congo or anywhere else. I don’t blame her, I blame her bosses.

But there’s more blame to go around. And for some of that I ask the reader to get down with me respecting why the above is not being discussed in educational circles, where they may or may not be addressing the psychological effects of high tech gadgetry, the dangerous electromagnetic pollution associated with gadgets, or the impact Silicon Valley devices and agenda has had on so many aspects of our lives. Whatever is or isn’t brought up — and it’s a rare day that any of that is dealt with in depth, or for any length of time, in academic settings — no one ever targets our complicity in what transpires in the DRC, what has been taking place there abominably for so very long.

If the atrocities being committed in the DRC with our tax dollars and by viciously intentional design — the very definition of Evil — were not repeated throughout many realms in our troubled world, I probably wouldn’t be writing this piece. But, fact is, I could name two dozen nations from the top of my head which are being subjected to horrors which are counterparts to the above… only because we’re paying forces to carry on abominable acts. For our pleasures and distractions during each and every day.

So that we can sleep through the night undisturbed by the fires in this world.

Rachel Oxman can be reached at [email protected]. The author would like readers to review the larger quote from Waiting for Godot, which began this article:

“ Was I sleeping, while the others suffered? Am I sleeping now? Tomorrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of today? That with Estragon my friend, at this place, until the fall of night, I waited for Godot? That Pozzo passed, with his carrier, and that he spoke to us? Probably. But in all that what truth will there be? He’ll know nothing. He’ll tell me about the blows he received and I’ll give him a carrot. (Pause.) Astride of a grave and a difficult birth. Down in the hole, lingeringly, the grave digger puts on the forceps. We have time to grow old. The air is full of our cries. But habit is a great deadener. At me too someone is looking, of me too someone is saying, He is sleeping, he knows nothing, let him sleep on. (Pause.) I can’t go on! (Pause.) What have I said? ”




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