Comic Relief (Or the Poverty Zoo)Posted: March 16, 2013 | |
At least Comic Relief did its magic, I suppose: I still hate the world.
For me it was, unsurprisingly, those images of Rob Brydon and David Tennant in an African hospital stuffed to the limits with malaria children. There was the inevitable contrast of colours: the white Westerner, come to inspect the black child shaking into deathly stillness. And then this absurd parody of a nature programme, this zoo of poverty, was confirmed with the short clip of David Attenborough prodding towards a village in his pillow-plush voice as though it were two obscure animals mating their way to extinction.
But it wasn’t the fault of Comic Relief. It wasn’t the fault of the celebrities. It’s fact that, in that hospital, we were watching the victims of poverty stare bleakly at its success stories – helpless comics who could just stand there, idly. If the world is a global city then African slums are the homeless littering the East End; there is no moral argument against pushing our resources to the absolute limit to sort the problem out.
And yet, somehow, I suspect nothing will change. I wonder: will I die 70 years from now with my finger on the TV remote watching that year’s “annual” charity awareness programme?