We have had so many examples of the bad sides of human nature in the last few weeks (Libya, Yemen, Cote d’Ivoire, Sudan, and the international response to many of the problems in each place, just for starters), that I’d like to take a minute to honor those who show the best of us.

Saturday’s Le Monde had some excellent articles on the nuclear problems at Fukushima; several of them focused on the workers (one with a nice look back at the workers still alive from the Chernobyl disaster).  One of those articles mentioned that among the heroes working at Fukushima are about 20 people who had been evacuated from the site when the problem started, but who volunteered to go back to help seal off the plant.  As the article said, most of them believe they are giving up their lives for the sake of the nation.  If you look at the news on Libya or Yemen (etc.) and despair, consider for a moment the astounding courage and selflessness of these volunteers, and, indeed, of the fire fighters and nuclear plant workers who risk their lives in what Le Monde called “terrifying conditions”, to prevent a meltdown.

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