Friday, February 10, 2012

Global Citizenship: Whether You Like It or Not!

Child Labor in India. Dangerous pesticides in Brazil. Civil War in Somalia. Starvation in the Congo. Nuclear disaster in Japan. We pretend to care because we don’t want to sound ignorant or insensitive. We don’t want to be politically incorrect, but do we really care? Why should we?

As long as we eat blueberries grown in Peru and drink orange juice from Brazil… As long as we drive cars manufactured in Japan and pump oil into them from the Middle East… As long as we watch televisions and talk on phones made in South Korea … As long as we show off gold and diamonds dug up from the earth of West Africa… As long as our children play with toys and wear clothes labels “Made in China”… WE HAVE TO CARE.

There are over 1000 U.S. military bases in 38 countries around the world. Schools and hospitals in Afghanistan and Palestine are being bombed with ammunition marked “U.S.A.” Despite the media exposure, children and adults in West Africa are still losing lives and limbs working in mines for minimal wages so we can support our fetish for diamonds and gold.

How long will we continue to live life with our blinders on? You may not think you have a voice, but you do because one voice can inspire another voice and another until there are millions of voices demanding justice, transparency, and morality.

Do you want to know how your voice can be heard the loudest? With your dollars! Every U.S. dollar we spend will undoubtedly affect someone else in another part of the world. We are global citizens, whether we like it or not! And it’s about time we realize we have an obligation to our neighbors- whether they live in Mexico, Uganda, or Syria- to take responsibility for our words, our actions, and our economic power.

The next time you are watching the news and the biggest story is about celebrity so-and-so’s baby bump, or engagement, know that you are being numbed and distracted from what is really going on in the world. Certain powers would love it if we remained in our ignorant bliss. They would love you to think they know what they’re doing with YOUR TAX DOLLARS. They got it handled, right? Because us peasants are too dumb to really understand what’s going on at home and abroad anyway, right? WRONG!

I’m not telling you to jump in the nearest protest or picket line (although, it wouldn’t be such a horrible idea). I’m just saying: WAKE UP!


Anonymous said...

Dagnapppppit. I feel tooo awake, turn my head slightly and there is yet another conspiracy or slave trade or child slave labor hidden in disguise! My worst sugar habit I just watched a youtube video was on the chocolate trade how children in Africa are being kidnapped from their homes to work harvested and trading the coco fruit!!! Never seen how it looked before it was processed before it looks like the chocolate we all know ( and most love) giving up chocolate will be my biggest challenge in life:(

Muslim Mommy said...

Karima! ASA! I know exactly how you feel! Being conscience of where our food/clothes/merchandise comes from is like taking on a HUGE responsibility and burden!

I say, do the best you can. It's not good for us to become obsessed about these things, yet at the same time, we have to get out of the bubble us as Americans live in!

InshaAllah, one day we will find peace within ourselves and our position in this crazy world.

Something we can learn from other cultures, is simplicity. Our lives are way too complicated. We aqquire too many things and sometimes we don't allow ourselves to just be. Just be still... Just be happy...