It is easy to blame the media for reporting much more on massacres in Paris than on bombings in Beirut or Baghdad. But media outlets are simply responding to consumer demands and market forces. It is on you, the consumer and moral citizen, to demand better coverage and to actively seek out a broader moral community.
This week the world saw the power of a single image -- that of the lifeless body of three year-old Aylan Kurdi lying face-down in the sand on a Turkish beach. The boy drowned, along with his brother and mother, trying to reach Europe from Syria. The heartbreaking image crystallized the growing refugee crisis, and personified the more than 2,600 people who have died this year trying to reach Europe by sea. Many are coming from Syria, where civil war has killed over 250,000 and displaced 11 million. As debate raged in the media about running the horrific photo, there was no argument about whether Europe and the rest of the West could be doing more to alleviate the horrific suffering. Already David Cameron has announced the U.K. will take in more refugees. But the image was a moral challenge to us all. As a tribute in an Australian paper read: "Rest in peace Aylan Kurdi. May God forgive us for failing you."