Friday, November 12, 2010

Reflection #12

“Though we may have different skin colors, our blood is the same,” Eve, the Congolese refugee who recently visited AU, emphasized. Despite our physical, ethnic and religious differences, we are so similar. Eve continued to explain how everyone feels the same hunger pains and the need for water. No one prefers to live in a refugee camp over a comfortable house. Most importantly, no one wants to in danger. We are so fortunate to live in an environment where we don’t have to constantly question our safety. Instead, we sit back in our chairs with the newspaper and read about families elsewhere who are ravaged by war and rebel groups. And our way of showing sympathy is to click the mouse on the link to “help build a well!” and enter our credit card number. I don’t know about you, but that frustrates me. It further adds to our ignorance and how much of life we take for granted.

So what can we do instead of obtaining a moment’s worth of warmth by spending $35 on an impoverished village? For one, we can take action. It’s vital that we start with the grassroots problems and work up. As mentioned in class, the main problem is the lack of education prevalent in these areas. Whole families don’t have the knowledge on how to fight back and better their situation. Even worse are the women who don’t have the voice to shout out against violations done to them. There are thousands, if not millions, of raped women who don’t have the strength and courage. Should this be ignored? I believe a stronger emphasis should be put on promoting education for families and most importantly children. No matter how cheesy it may sound, children are the voice of the future. If they are left uneducated, how can we expect them to make informed decisions?

A person who I look up to and would love to meet one day is a man named Greg Mortison. If you have ever read the book, Three Cups of Tea, you will see what I mean. This was a man who saw the injustice Pakistani and Afghani villages experienced by not having schools and how they were being manipulated by the local governments. With his own money, he went over and successfully constructed numerous schools in the regions. Why don’t we have more people like him? He recognized, like Eve, that we do have the same blood; and as global citizens, we must act upon that. It is time that more of us get up and advocate for what is right.

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