What kind of primitives have we become that we need to see a drowned person before we acknowledge to ourselves that people are drowning? Did we not know, had we not read, that migrant children drowned? What happened to the written word? Are newspapers and broadcasters to dispense altogether with report and analysis and offer us only a slide show? “Tragic,” “shaming”, “shocking” — this is politics by adjective. We need some nouns.
We have no idea what to do about the refugee crisis. We didn’t before we saw the picture and we still don’t. It is possible there is no answer. Should there be a workable answer, it is unlikely the nations of Europe will be able to agree upon it.But at least we are no longer in the position of firefighters who refuse to rescue those in the burning building because it would not put the fire out.