On NBC's "Meet The Press," President Obama claimed that the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings, where 20 first-graders and six adults were slaughtered by a mentally disturbed gunman -- “Was The Worst Day Of My Presidency”.
“Really?”, I thought. Don’t get me wrong, Sandy Hook was a crime & a terrible tragedy, but I wondered: "What crosses Obama’s mind when he reads reports stating the casualties, including children, who are the victims of his secret drone strikes in Pakistan, Yemen, etc.?"
The children who were killed in Sandy Hook meant the world to their parents and we grief with them; yet as a society, we seem indifferent to the tears shed by heartbroken parents in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere. Perhaps the message is that some people matter more than others...
In a world that constantly insists that some of us are worthless, some of us are disposable, let’s change the message & follow the path of Martin Luther King, Jr. who said "I have a dream", rather than the current Obama's policy of: "I have a drone" .
“I wonder how the foreign policies of the United States would look if we wiped out the national boundaries of the world, at least in our minds, and thought of all children everywhere as our own. Then we could never drop an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, or napalm on Vietnam, or wage war anywhere, because wars, especially in our time, are always wars against children, indeed our children.”Like children, the elderly are often ignored, worse considered useless / 'all used up', and finally discarded. Even China, a country described so vividly in Pearl Buck’s ‘The Good Earth’ as one that revered its elders, now has a law requiring adult children to visit their parents.
As a society we have discarded the values extolled by numerous stories that indicate “age brings wisdom”. Forgetting their contributions, we rush to get ahead of the pack, when as Jennifer Lewis’ song: ‘Grandma Small’ points out: our elders are the often the only ones who will:
“...always [be] happy to see me
My Grandma Small took me in,
Even when I didn’t win...
I love my Grandma Small”
In gratitude and remembrance to those considered ‘disposable’, I’d like to dedicate this poem:
Great minds wasted.
We treat each other and the earth as being disposable --
People, the Planet.
Not taken care of -- worthless.
Garbage piled up due to all our stuff.
Where does it end?
When do we say enough?
But sometimes we can salvage trash
And make something beautiful...
From Garbage --
Landfill Harmonic is a film about:
Inspiring Dreams One Note at a Time...
A remarkable orchestra
From a remote village in Paraguay...
Where children manage to play
In a Recycled Orchestra
With instruments made from
Our discarded items...
Imagine: the body of a cello made from
A discarded metal canister,
A violin made of scrap metal
And discarded wood.
Turning Trash into Musical Treasure.
The Recycled Orchestra
Knows how to make
Stay in the Game...
As the Lorax once said:
"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
Nothing is going to get better. It's not".
Not to put too fine a point on it, but all people matter. None of us is ‘disposable’.