There are times in my life that I get so wrapped up in what I want and how successful I can be. I even sometimes let myself feel sorry for myself because my life isn’t as good as I’d like it to be.
Then I turn on the news or I open a webpage to see a story about a child who has suffered abuse or even died because of abuse or neglect, and then I hear more stories about children who are hungry around the world and the death of so many because of hunger.
And then I feel ashamed because I have so selfishly felt sorry for myself over my lack of a better life in America while children were dying, dying because of cruelty and neglect and especially hunger, in other places of the world.
I also recognize that I’m not just ashamed of myself but I’m also ashamed of humankind in general, that with all our technology and all of the food that is available in this world, that we as a species allow so many of our young to starve to death.
16,000 children a day die of hunger related causes, that’s one child every five seconds. Those children deserved to be loved the same as our own children, no more, no less, yet they starved to death.
I realize that much of the hunger goes on in countries whose governments are dictatorial. Still, America as a country, the same as England, Canada, Spain, Germany, Italy, Japan, along with all of the democratic, capitalist countries, do not make child hunger a high enough priority. Governments’ foreign policies usually focus on economic and territorial gains for their own countries, not the lives or deaths of children in lowly places that seem to deserve little of their attention.
Much more can be done to see to the needs of children in this world if we are to step to the next level of civilization. As long as we put our resources into wars and weapons then we will remain at a lower level of civilization.
Our technology may continue to grow and our lives may become much easier thanks to that technology, but until we decide that children matter more than dominance and wealth, we will continue to be a limited species in the universe.
Children in this world – though they are your children, your neighbors’ children, children in another city or state or even somewhere else in this world – any child who wakes up every morning to pain and suffering because of lack of food, then we all should be ashamed.
I’m not saying just we Americans but I say that to all of us as a whole, civilized society around the world who make up the ones of us who profess to be good people, and I stand in those numbers myself.
Certainly, we can be thoughtful and generous, maybe write a check to help those hungry children. Many of us do that and it makes us feel better, and that’s a good thing I’m sure. But let’s be honest, it goes further than just our own pocketbooks but to those who are in power, our own governments; those who we elect and who serves us as democracies.
It is when those governments make it their priority to seek to build war machines over the hunger of children. What governments do instead is categorize hunger as a need that charities should fulfill, therefore organizations such as the Red Cross and UNICEF and other non-profit organizations take on a job that is limited at best.
Don’t get me wrong, these organizations do great work and they deserve every bit of support we have to give to them. But because they’re not a political power, they cannot change policies that governments implement, nor can they even influence governments’ policies enough to make a difference.
We as the People of those governments are the ones who need to demand the change, and when I say demand; we shouldn’t take no for an answer. If we are the People of democracies, then we have the power of our votes.
We as the human race can decide what we want our world to be. We can decide that everyone shall eat on the face of this earth. We can decide that our governments will do what we, the People want them to do, which is to fight hunger and to fight for children all around this world. Make it their cause; make it their mission, make it all our mission as free people.
Let us look beyond our politics and even our religions or our non-religions. Let us look instead into our own hearts and decide for ourselves that we’re better than what we’ve allowed ourselves to become.
Let us seek a world without hunger and without war. Let us be guided by our hearts, because it is not unreachable, not if we have the willpower and the heart to make it all come true.