I have read through six weeks worth of social justice theory and I have found nowhere that explains why there is so much talk and such little action. I see two camps, the people who are genuinely interested in learning the cultures and needs of those who are oppressed and those who are content to theorize about the second trip they made to save the rain forest, and how quaint those people are over there. It is apt to include the caveat that not everybody who travels to help has the same intentions, and that not every heart that desires to inspire makes any sort of impact.
I admire the work of the various organizations that have publicised the needs of the developing world. Those who have challenged us to think that the imbalance between the developed and poor countries are a moral obligation and worth serving. I have met so many people who are happy to stand in the precipice and walk through fire to campaign for the rights of the silent masses, or rather, those who have been silenced en masse by strictly controlled media who would rather show drought than self sustaining communities in Africa and who constantly review tsunami footage and neglect to request for funds for community schools that are succeeding despite the tremendous losses in that time.
Sadly, I live in a country where living on the Gulf Coast, being poor and being black put you at the bottom of the waiting list for immediate government aid, and where being a citizen is one of the most arduous processes that you can be part of. It strikes me and yet energizes me that there is a free numbering of ‘illegals’ yet nobody wants to face the figures about poor Americans in every state.
Taking stock of these truths and others, I sense the next generation of givers learning from the errors of the period past, and moving on to greater commitment and involvement. I choose service.