Tag Archives: obscenity

reality check

I have a real issue with this. We live in a world where over 20 of our family still die every day from hunger.  This, therefore, strikes me as obscene.

I think of myself as a practicing Christian, and for me such inequality is a matter of both basic morality and faithfulness to the teaching of Christ. Allowing any to starve, or even go in want, is unacceptable when we have means to prevent it.  It is wrong on every level.

Facts such as these serve as a reality check. Such disparity is a clear indication that we refuse to accept we are one family. Such statistics also demonstrate that calling ourselves followers of Jesus Christ is far different than living as one.

 

 

why aren’t we outraged?

If there is such an animal as a just war, then going to war against the unnecessary evil of hunger would qualify. Allowing even one child to go to bed hungry is sinful. Business as usual when 13,000,000 kids go hungry in the richest, most blessed country in the history of the planet is just obscene. There’s nothing moral in that, and there’s certainly nothing Christian about it either.

worth a thousand words

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All life is sacred. Allowing such suffering is an obscenity.

This Somalian child is a member of our human family, created in the image of God.

He is my brother.

There is no spiritual tradition, no faith path, no religion that condones, tolerates or allows such misery. Every hungry and starving child in the world is an indictment against superficial spirituality that ignores the reality of this unnecessary evil.

When will we decide it’s time to become human enough to erase the obscenity of hunger once and for all?

If it’s not today it’s not soon enough.

 

the shame of all

I have often stated that hunger is not a problem. And I stand by that statement.

But, if hunger is not a problem, what, exactly, is it? Is it a social ill? Is it a political issue? Is it a spiritual issue?

We live in a perfectly created world with more than enough resources to supply the needs of every member of our human family. This has been true now for over 50 years. Yet, we allow over 25,000 people to die every day because they do not receive enough food to keep them alive.

How is that possible? What does that say about our humanity?

Hunger is an obscenity. It’s the most vile vulgarity uttered on our planet. And there is simply no excuse for any of us.

Every single child that cries herself to sleep from the pain of an empty stomach is a damning indictment of our frightening lack of moral values, both as individuals and of society as a whole. We would do well to remember that,

“The hunger of one is the shame of all.”

two enemies

I have two enemies in all the world,
Two twins, inseparably
pooled:
The hunger of the hungry and the fullness of the full.

This little poem I recently came across by Marina Tsvetaeva well describes my own feelings. After 40 years of walking along side the poor and hungry I still cannot reconcile myself to the apathy of those that have sufficient resources yet refuse to help those of our family in need. Here is an equally short poem I wrote over 30 years ago.

Hunger is an obscenity,
a four-letter word
scrawled across the lives of millions
by those that could, but do not share.

 

if it doesn’t bleed…

What is newsworthy? It’s far more than a philosophical question for me.

I took Journalism 101 before the turn of the century, and I have been working with journalists and reporters most of my adult life. I am also always actively seeking publicity for the various nonprofit organizations I work with and of which I am a part. I am comfortable with the media. I know a little about what is news and what isn’t.

One of the first adages we were taught in my journalism class was that “if it doesn’t bleed it doesn’t lead.” Some things never change.

Every since the collapse last month of the garment factory in Bangladesh, the news of this particular tragedy has been close to  continuous. It is newsworthy. Over 1125 people lost their lives. That is definitely news.

What bothers me is that the media coverage of that singular event continues after almost a full month. Over 1125 people died in a tragic accident. That’s news. I understand that.

But, during this media feeding frenzy and shark-like ripping at the carcass of that story, over 25,000 of our family have been needlessly dying from hunger related causes every single day. That’s over 750,000 unnecessary deaths in the month since the Bangladesh building collapse. Yet, I can find no coverage of these deaths.

Where is the media coverage for the victims of hunger? Why isn’t the unnecessary deaths of these innocents newsworthy?

“If it doesn’t bleed it doesn’t lead.” Maybe the victims of hunger are dying too quietly. They just need to bleed more.  Or maybe the world just doesn’t give a damn about the poorest of the poor. It’s obvious that the media doesn’t. The hungry just are not newsworthy, even in death.

If we ever get serious about ending the moral obscenity of hunger in a world of plenty this will have to change.