As I contemplated on what I was going to write and how I was going to participate in a Blog Action Day 2008 in which thousands of bloggers all over the world are thinking and writing about the same issue that transcends color, creed, race and or country, I was taken over by a lot of emotions. I thought about the lady we often see walking in the downtown area asking people for quarters. Over the years it has become a joke amongst most people who work in that area, whenever someone sees her or comes across, they’d laugh and say there goes the quarter lady! People laugh at her because she has a one liner ‘got a quarter?’ for everyone. You can find her eating a subway sandwich every day at the train station. I’ve never laughed at her but I’d admit (and I am ashamed of this) that I have ignored her many times and turned my face away thinking I can’t give her a quarter every day?
How selfish I was. With blog action day theme, as I was reading more and more on poverty, I couldn’t believe I had done that to her. It is so easy to act like I did and ignore this problem but just imagine if we had to beg someone for every meal, day after day! I know my heart is at the right place but on this day, I pledge to make conscious efforts to make a difference in whatever small ways I can.
We humans are so strange in that when in United States someone talks about poverty, they mostly refer to it or think about it as a condition that exists only in some remote 3rd world, under-developed section of the society. So not true. America has it’s share of poverty as detailed in this website. Imagine this for a second, according to the GlobalIssues, almost half the world population – that is over three billion people – live on less than $2.50 a day!
If these numbers on the chart above don’t really do anything for you, I am sure the following video certainly will move you.
As for me, I went over the list of 88 ways to take action against poverty now that Easton Ellsworth made on Blog Action Day blog yesterday, from people’s contributions. I am going to try to do as many of those things as possible – some I already do, like eating vegetarian meals twice – I’ve been a vegetarian for a couple of years (well I do eat fish, but just that, no mammals and/or even chicken), signed up with kiva to make loans, clicked on the hunger site to give free food to the poor. I can’t say I am ready to go homeless for a day and night yet but that would be quite a lesson.
But I want to get started today, NOW, with this post. So, I pledge to donate $1.00 to Kiva.org for each comment on this post.
There are tons of websites to get inspiration from and get involved. I have met a lot of great people via blogs, who are spending a whole lot of time to make a difference. Head over to Train for Humanity and see how you can get involved while getting healthy yourself.