A Long Way Gone and The Bite of the Mango

909 Words4 Pages
Six billion people, six billion unique beings, yet so many of them are unfairly grouped together based off of unfair, arbitrarily selected parallels. In common mans’ terms, prejudice is an illogical, and disgusting aspect of the human syndrome. Ishmael Beah, and Mariatu Kamara, both child survivors of the Sierra Leone war, are familiar with prejudice on a very personal level. Beah, a young boy, and eventual soldier during the war, experiences wildly different prejudice than Mariatu, a young girl, and mother, during the country’s bloody conflict. Though both experience, and practice, unfair prejudice, Beah’s experience was far more negative and destructive than Kamara’s. Child soldiers, such as Beah, are a topic of extreme moral controversy, but in his Journal on Military Ethics, Dan Zupan says it best: That the child posed a real threat is undeniable. It is reasonable to conclude that if someone raises a weapon, aims it at you, then cocks the weapon, that he plans to shoot you. Since the person is doing this in a hostile environment where people have been shooting at you routinely, the conclusion seems especially warranted. In fact, it seems unreasonable, irresponsible, even negligent, not to fire upon this threat. (Zupan 1) Beah never carries a weapon when he enters small villages for the first time, yet after witnessing so many children perform this act villagers almost routinely he is a potential killer. Villagers had grown acustomed to young boys routinely shooting at them. Even after being fed by an individual of a village for weeks, Beah and his friends are still almost executed based solely on speculation (Beah 66). Just because he is a twelve year old boy, all of the natives of Beah’s own home country as... ... middle of paper ... ...his own tribesmen at gunpoint Beah, still finds a way to be emotionless and point the gun back at them when he is given the opportunity. He could not let his pre conceived notions of the enemy go away so easily. Kamara at least is able to sympathize with beggars when she sees them in London despite how much more luxurious their lives were compared to hers. It may seem easy to try and organize the 6 billion humans that coexist on Earth, but it is just not possible; prejudice is has no place on this earth for it accomplishes nothing. Works Cited Kamara, Mariatu, and Susan McClelland. The Bite of the Mango. [Toronto]: Annick, 2008. Print. Beah, Ishmael. A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007. Print. Zupan, Dan. "THE CHILD SOLDIER: NEGLIGENT RESPONSE TO A THREAT." Host. EBSCO, Dec. 2011. Web. 14 Nov. 2013.
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