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Worth The Prize?

Updated on June 24, 2014

The War over The Peace Prize

Awards are always a great way to get debates and discussion started; The Academy Awards, the Grammy Awards, etc usually get people discussing who deserves it and who didn't. The Nobel Peace Prize, awarded this year to the European Union, is a prize that has become more scrutinized in recent years.

A lot of this is along ideological lines. Those on the right like seeing the award go to dissidents against what they see as repressive regimes, as long as those regimes aren't an ally or trading partner. Those on the left like the award going to people and groups opposing poverty, war, etc. The award taking a green tint on a few occasions is something that the left sees as a good sign as well.

I will admit there have been some winners that have had me scratching my head; Arafat's win and even the one awarded to President Obama had me questioning the committee. Others that many argued with, Al Gore's for example, I saw as being reasonable.

Many on the left questioned the European Union's win. I am sure many of them would have liked to see Bradley Manning, or Julian Assange win. The Nobel Peace Prize, much like the prize for Literature, is often more of a lifetime achievement award. The prize is give for a body of work, Jimmy Carter's award would be an example of this concept.

But there are a few people and groups that have never won and we may not know if they have been nominated; author and human rights activist Arundhati Roy, linguist and dissenter Noam Chomsky, The Union Of Concerned Scientists, or even Greenpeace. Mala Yousafzai, the Pakistani student who was the target of a Taliban assassination attempt might bear watching in the years to come.

Of course, a case that since the world has been in a "War on Terror" since September of 2001, the award should not be given out at all makes a bit of sense.

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    • lrc7815 profile image

      Linda Crist 

      6 years ago from Central Virginia

      You make some very valid points here and I agree that many deserving people have missed the boat. Noam Chomsky is high on my list too. Sometimes I think we live in such a warped world that very little makes sense. But I still try to figure it out. This was great food for thought.

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