Monday, August 28, 2006

Hotel Rwanda

I know. It was out ages ago and I should have watched it before, but I never found the time. I can't honestly say that I am glad that I finally watched it though. I know of the atrocities that happen in the world, I know the suffering that people are forced to go through at the hands of others and I know that there is so much more that everyone can do to help those in need. As I sat watching this movie yesterday, Sage slept. I clung to her little body, with her head nestled under my chin, as if her life depended upon it. I had an irrational fear that the Hutu rebels could somehow reach through the television screen and take her from me, as they had so many children in Rwanda. Or, they could kill me and leave her without a mother to care for her.

I have never understood racial hatred, although I have seen enough of it myself. Not a hatred such as that in the many countries in the world where genocide occurs, but hatred nonetheless. I have never understood hatred founded in religion. Most of all, I have never understood how anyone can justify a hatred enough to condone the mass killing of anyone, let alone children. What is it that makes someone feel so superior over someone that they view them as sub-human and think they have no only the right, but the obligation to irridicate the world of a particular group of people? I wonder what atrocities Sage will have to see in her lifetime. I wonder how many times I will have to do battle with those who try to bring hatred and intolerance into her life.

I can't imagine what it must be like for the mothers in the many "third world" countries who have to watch their children die from malnutrition or childhood illnesses that could easily be cured with modern medical practices. Or to watch your child be raped and mutilated to a point where she may never have children of her own, in an act that is meant to prevent a group of people from perpetuating their kind ... taking from them not only their ability to bear children of their own, but their innocence and trust. Often taking their will to live or their actual lives.

The one thing that is becoming more and more clear to me is the hatred of my country by so many. Not only my country, any country that has the means to help these people and doesn't go and pull them out of the hell they live in. If I were a mother in Rwanda, the Congo, Darfur ... I would ... I don't know. I would likely be living in fear, praying for someone to help, knowing that no one would and try to protect my child the best that I could. Would I hate the ruling powers of the world for not helping me and my people? Or would I be too busy trying to survive to not have time for such hatred?

I guess the only thing I can do as I sit in my air-conditioned home and drive my SUV is always remember that while I don't have the easiest life, I have more than I could ever ask for. Sage has love, she is well-fed and has proper medical care. I do worry about the crazy people out there who do atrocious things to children ... and I worry about the typical things that parents worry about with their children. I don't have to worry about some rebel storming my house in the middle of the night to kill me and rape my baby. However, acknowledging what goes on in other parts of the world just doesn't seem to be enough. There has to be something that I can do from, what now seems to be a pampered existence, something I can do to help. But where do you start? Giving money to a charity seems so useless knowing that most of that money likely goes to "running" that charity and the little that does make to the country it is destined for is often stolen or given to those people that are committing the atrocities you are trying desparately to aid against. There has to be something ...


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