A Lebanese doctor says he followed news of the bombing in Paris—a city he loves—with feelings of horror and hopelessness. But "amid the chaos and tragedy of it all, one nagging thought wouldn't leave my head," writes Elie Fares on A Separate State of Mind. "It's the same thought that echoes inside my skull at every single one of these events, which are becoming sadly very recurrent: we don't really matter." In other words, the ISIS terror bombings that shook a Shiite suburb in Beirut last week, killing 45 people, didn't garner nearly the attention of the Paris attacks. "When my people died, they did not send the world in mourning," he writes. "Their death was but an irrelevant fleck along the international news cycle, something that happens in those parts of the world."
Fares notes that "even Facebook didn't bother with making sure my people were marked safe, trivial as it may be." But what bothers him most of all—even more than the "rise of Islamophobia" that will likely follow Paris—is that some of his fellow Arabs and Lebanese also mourn dead Parisians more than their own. "Many of the people I know who are utterly devastated by the Parisian mayhem couldn't give a rat's ass about what took place at a location 15 minutes away from where they lived, to people they probably encountered one day as they walked down familiar streets," he writes. "In the world that doesn't care about Arab lives, Arabs lead the front lines." Click to see his full blog.