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Libby Mettam: Aishwarya’s case highlights politics’ compassion crisis

In 2006, Barack Obama spoke about an empathy deficit affecting the US.

“There’s a lot of talk in this country about the Federal deficit . . . I think we are going to have to talk more about our empathy deficit — the ability to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes, to see the world through someone else’s eyes,” he told a group of graduates.

“When we start thinking like this, when we choose to broaden the ambit of our concern and empathise with the plight of others whether they are close friends or distant strangers, it becomes harder not to act.

“It’s time for a sense of empathy to infuse our politics in America. It is time for us to stop making excuses for inaction.”

The American political system is a different beast, no doubt. But the basic lack of compassion and empathy permeating the political system in our own backyard is not dissimilar.

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