Sunday, December 2, 2007

Because I don't particularly feel like being liked today...

I was watching TV last night and a commercial came on bemoaning the lack of clean water in African villages.

This dire situation perplexed me. Has Africa run out of water I wondered?


“Of all the renewable water available in Africa each year, only 4% is used -- because most Africans lack the wells, canals, pumps, reservoirs and other irrigation systems (Africare)”

Is the water beyond the reach of conventional low tech methods of extraction?


“In Ghana, the following assumptions were made:

· mud washbore method of construction
· average depth of tube well 10 metres”

So it must be a lack of technological know-how that prevents Africans from reaching their own water.


“The earliest wells are known from the Neolithic. In the submerged Pre-Pottery Neolithic B settlement of Atlit Yam in Israel, dated to 8100-7500 BC”

Oh, by the way… That well is 7-8 meters deep.

If primitive Neolithic man could dig a well 7-8 meters deep 8,000 years before Christ, then why the Christ (pardon the pun) can’t modern day Africans?

It isn’t the money. According to the African Well Fund, workers are only being paid about $1.20 Canadian for a days work. And the cost of an entire well is only about $1,796.00 Canadian. And…

Hold on… Is it possible that our altruism, and the altruism of organizations like African Well Fund have eliminated the need, will and desire of Africans to DIY???

The human race has been looking out for #1 since day 1 by drawing water so that life was possible so what gives? Is this socialist apathy, exemplified by refusing to pick up shovel and pick to save oneself the outcome of our charity? Is the systemic laziness that would rather beg for clean water than dig a well though the water lies right under your feet our gift to Africa?

Seems to me that the only thing holding keeping Africa from a long cold drink is the money we keep shoveling into their cleptocratic governments. That, and a social welfare system that places the question “Why should I” in the mouth of every aid recipient.

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