OPINION

Cultural diseases

No one can fail to be moved by the efforts of the athletes participating in the Paralympic Games, transcending the bounds of their bodies and souls. Nor can anyone fail to consider the origin of those bounds, which are not the same for all the athletes. Some were born with a problem of mobility or sight, others have lived part of their lives sound of limb; many were already athletes when they became disabled. An illness, an accident (traffic or work-related), or a war changed their lives and obviously disillusioned them until they found within themselves the enormous strength needed to go on as if nothing had happened. Regarding illnesses due to a gene or a germ, we can only hope for scientific progress, and above all that the progress will apply to everyone. As for those other «illnesses» – social or cultural – much can be said and even more done. For example, traffic accidents are a social disease. Negligence or bad timing is not an excuse for our anti-social and aggressive driving. War is a cultural disease and is responsible for the injuries to many Paralympic athletes. For example, the best Paralympic volleyball team is from Bosnia-Herzegovina. We cannot easily stop wars, no matter how many millions demonstrate against them. But we can certainly do something about that lesser but permanent war that is waged daily on the roads.