Saturday, December 13, 2008

Pirates are for real and not in Pittsburgh

The serious story about the threat of Pirates on the open seas is being told in real time. Today the Indian government caught some of them:

NEW DELHI - The Indian navy captured 23 pirates who threatened a merchant vessel Saturday in the lawless waters of the Gulf of Aden, where dozens of ships have come under attack by gunmen in recent months.

What I find interesting is that a word "Pirate" that had been relegated to baseball and to movies is being used in such a real context for the first time in my life. I'd never heard that word used in a news context. What this shows is that history and culture matter.Things that people thought was in past, can make a comeback. Society may or may not advance so far as to outgrow some threats or problems. Earlier this year, I would have thought and said a "Pirate" is a historical term, but I learn from my ignorance. It's clear that instead of eradication we generally just transform the nature of problems into something less dangerous, and they will probably have to be addressed again. Yet, the beauty of our country is that we ultimately remain optimistic, so much so that the potentially terrorizing activities of Pirates seems more a joke than a humanitarian disaster.

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