Death, Fairness and Being Left Unmoved

13 August 2014 at 23:09 (Random Randomness) (, )

henrysurteesRandomly yesterday, the thought just came into my head of the tragic death of Henry Surtees. I don’t know why this suddenly popped into my head, but it has left me feeling so so sad. Even when I’d first read of it, years ago, it made me hurt inside, too. I didn’t know him — I think I’d only vaguely heard of John Surtees’s son — and the last time I watched a F2 race, I believe it was called F3000. And there are so many people dying every day, in much worse ways than this, so why does this one upset me so much and yet others leave me completely unmoved? And it’s sad, because he was young, and his parents had to witness the death of their teenage son. And if that tyre had just been a centimetre or two off, or if Henry had just been driving a bit slower or faster, it would have missed him and he’d still be alive. And it’s so sad seeing that smiling face and knowing it will never smile again. I don’t know why this one particular death upsets me. It just makes me feel so sad, I have such a cloud of gloom hanging over me all the time, and how must it be for his family? Even after these years? And his biography on his homepage still speaks of him as being alive and it’s sweet in a way, but heartbreaking, too.

As an aside: this is one of those situations where someone will say, “Life is unfair.” And this is probably the kind of situation that saying was coined for, but I hate it. You know, life dishes out bad things to good people and good things to bad people and it doesn’t seem fair, at least not this side of life[1], but so often people use this saying as a cop-out.

I really hate it.

You know, when people will trample all over you, take advantage of your good nature and hard-work and then when you complain that you’d like a little fairness, they’ll say. “Life isn’t fair”.


That isn’t life being unfair, it’s YOU being unfair.

As a teenager, I used to see other people watching news reports of people dying and being injured in war and it always left me unmoved. I used to think there was something wrong with me (I hadn’t heard of Asperger’s then). How could I feel so utterly disconnected from the suffering of my fellow human beings? And yet I did. In fact, I still do. I’ll read of the death of innocents, and I’ll know it’s a bad thing and that someone suffered, but strangely, I just don’t get upset about it in the way that those around me do.

I’ve seen photos of kids literally blown apart by Israhelli rockets and I know it’s a bad thing, and I know they suffered and it’s wrong wrong wrong that someone should do such a thing, to a child especially. And I hate Israhell for what they are doing.

But the reaction to it is more logical than emotional. And it’s not that I don’t care, but I can’t connect and it’s a hard thing to know about yourself, that you are sort of heartless even if you’re not.

And yet there are other times, as above, where a single tragedy can leave me feeling depressed. It seems that only if I know something more personal about the victims that it upsets me, and I don’t really understand that. If I see a picture of the victim when they are alive, and get to see the person, then read that they died, I will feel upset by it, but if I just hear reports or just see the corpse, it leaves me unmoved. See, I get upset just hearing strangers arguing, but seeing bloodshed and carnage and nothing.

Being Aspie sucks.

[1] In Islam, we believe that suffering is a trial from God, that if you bear your trial with patience and keep your trust in God, you will be rewarded for it. Suffering can also be a means of expiation of your sins. “No calamity befalls a Muslim but that Allah expiates some of his sins because of it, even though it were the prick he receives from a thorn.”

Further, even the most wicked person may have done some good in his life. God gives them all their reward in this life, so that when they die, He owes them nothing. For those who believe, though, they will get their goodness in the next life, which is eternal.


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