2022 has been a sad year for humanity. We have witnessed failure after failure throughout the year as compassion and empathy have been wiped out by selfishness and hate.
Our government has displayed its inherent selfishness and they feed the greedy upper class to which they themselves do belong, while they preach ‘difficult times’ and a collective struggle. Though we already knew that those who lead our country, govern themselves by different rules than the public. ‘Partygate’ told us all we needed to know about the morals of our elected officials. With such transcendence above the general population, our political leaders can’t possibly comprehend the struggles we face.
After 12 years of budget cuts and a mishandled pandemic, the NHS finally fell to its knees this year. Ambulances became hearses and paramedics became coroners as people died in their homes waiting for help that would never arrive. Hospital waiting rooms overflowed waiting for overworked and overwhelmed staff without appropriate resources to help.
Strikers begged for what they desperately needed only to be met with disregard. Rishi told them there simply was no money to fund their pay rises from the comfort of one of his 4, multi-million-pound homes. Our Prime Minister’s tone-deaf attitude towards the cost of living crisis rang loud and clear this December when he asked a homeless man if he worked in business, whilst helping in a homeless shelter.
Overseas hate produced a devastating ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine. Putin, fueled by power-hungry motives, left his humanity behind and brought relentless violence upon Ukraine. Hate so strong, he defied the Geneva Convention and targeted civilians. With over 100,000 dead on both sides, Putin fails to learn the futility of war. A lesson that should have been learnt in 1914.
Over in the USA, the stench of intolerance Trump’s presidency left behind lingered in the air and it was American women who choked on it. This year America took a huge step back in the women’s rights movement by legally restricting abortions. The overturning of Roe v. Wade has seen 13 states banning abortions completely and several other states severely restricting them. Women across the country have even been denied medically necessary abortions. This inhumane lack of female healthcare has led to preventable deaths and will continue to plague the country with more tragedy as more states plot to ban abortion.
Female rights continue to be trampled on in Afghanistan too, as the Taliban control has driven female students out of education. Those who protested this ban, were faced with violence that no one can protect them from. Forced marriages, strict dress codes and maternal mortality are just a few of the tragedies the Taliban control brought upon Afghan women this year.
2022 brought on the World Cup, a traditionally positive event, which unites the county as they support their team. This year the celebrations were clouded by the injustices. Qatar, a country whose leaders are full of hate and intolerance for the LGBTQ+ community, was chosen to host the event. FIFA sold out their morals to the highest bidder and the injustices in Qatar were ignored.
I wish there was a silver lining hidden in the humanity calamity of 2022 but justice has yet to be found for any of these issues - and it won't, not until the fundamental qualities of humanity are restored.
We need to accept the things we don't understand, we need to be compassionate to those around us, empathetic to one another and love, not hate. Most importantly we can’t tolerate those who incite hate.
We need to do better in 2023.