I was informed today that a friend and colleague had a massive heart attack and is on life support. He is a man of 44 years of age and is in good shape. He has dedicated his life to helping those who are indigent, homeless and otherwise disenfranchised by our society.
When one hears about a relatively young man having such a massive heart attack- it slaps you in the face. When this person is a shining star in the constellation of social services for the poor it is profoundly disturbing.
Our lives are precious commodities and all life should be valued. Many of our conservative friends are more interested in life in the womb and forget about the lives of those poor people who struggle day in and day out. My friend dedicates his life to these people- those that are poor and breathing this world’s air.
During this Bush era the poor in general and the disabled poor and elderly poor in particular are not a factor in public policy development. Why should they be? Afterall they don’t usually vote or have money to donate. That seems a cynical comment- but I believe it is VERY true.
Many segments of our society have become conveniently invisible and are considered nuisances, flotsom and throw away people. No one should be considered that way. Every human being has inate dignity. Some were born in a horrible situation, others have been dealt a horrible hand and our society has never been good about offering positive alternatives. The end result- people find dysfunctional ways to deal with the world of poverty and alienation; often turning to drugs and crime.
We must honor the inate humanity in all of us. We must not let our fellow man down. A society is judged on how well it takes care of its most vulnerable.
So- here’s the question “How are we doing”? I think you know the answer.