Commentary

What's Going On Out There?

We are arguing about whether our citizens have the right to protest peacefully (they do).  We are arguing about whether sports teams should be engaged in politics or not, and whether politicians should be engaged with sports teams.  We are arguing about whether sports teams should visit the White House or not.  

We are arguing so much that we are missing out on the fact that a few million people are in very dire straits and our country doesn’t appear to be doing much to help any of them.  While I agree that all of this arguing has a purpose, I think we may be clouding our own judgement.  These people need some help.

Houston, Florida, and Puerto Rico, as well as a number of Caribbean islands, are filled with people who are hurting. In some cases, there are millions of people without power or water.  It’s going to be quite some time before these people are able to get back to some semblance of normalcy and in the meantime, we are paying little to no attention to them.

The media is distracted.  It can barely keep up with the escalating wars of words on multiple fronts.  Not only are we divided internally as a country, but we are a nation divided as we look outward as well.  Whether you realize it or not, we are engaged in a media war on at least three different global fronts, with one of those fronts escalating at an alarming rate and truly threatening us on a nuclear level.  

Since we are unable, as a people, to focus, perhaps the media can help us prioritize how we spend our time and address some of the challenges right in front of us and within our power to affect. Let’s find ways to push the government to help these people in need.

Just this week, the five living ex-Presidents of the United States joined together to raise awareness and help the people of Puerto Rico.  The current President finally responded, although he should have been leading the pack.  

What else can we be doing to show some unity and put aside differences to help people who need it?  Maybe — just maybe — that will even help us heal some of our own challenges.

It’s almost too much to keep track of right now.  Anger, frustration, hate — these are not emotions that I want my kids to be witnessing every day.  Maybe it’s naïve of me to think these emotions haven’t been under the surface for years. So maybe it’s time they came to the forefront so we can deal with them — but I’m not sure it should be at the expense of our humanity and our ability to help one another.

If you have a voice, I urge you to continue to use it, but please use a portion of it not only to protest, but to try to do something positive to help.  It’s one thing to point out a problem, but it’s something better to take steps to help fix it.   

I for one will be doing a little research to see what I can do to help these people in storm-ravaged parts of our country. I hope you will do the same.

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