Wednesday, November 02, 2011
With Great [Knowledge] Comes Great Responsibility
The problem with knowing stuff is that you can't un-know it. Sometimes you can forget it. I've forgotten the Krebs cycle. I used to know it frontwards and backwards. Now all I can remember is that CO2 is a byproduct and I'm not even certain of that. But I've forgotten it because it became unimportant to me. It isn't something I have to regularly visit and, frankly, I never cared much about knowing it after the exams.
But there are other things I know that sometimes I wish....I didn't. I'd like to go through a day and ignorantly participate in life and just be normal. Except, knowing what I know, I don't really want to not know it. Lack of knowledge does not necessarily also mean lack of accountability. Just because I don't know a "J" turn is illegal doesn't mean the police officer won't give me a ticket.
I can't pretend to not know the sinister things that go on beneath fun children's holidays. I can't pretend to not know the way the more popular forms of birth control work. I can't un-know the current actions of Hershey and Pepsi. I can't un-know that my daughter's care center has a waiting list of malnourished babies to take her place as soon as she and her friends are cleared out of there. And I can't un-know that a child could be fed, clothed, sheltered and schooled for a month for less money than I spent on candy for a holiday I don't even celebrate.
And I am disgusted.
One of the awesome things about adopting is the instant community you find yourself in. One such person posted on her blog that the group she sponsored a child through in Ethiopia would let you come visit when you go for your adoption (I know World Vision does as well). She also said she had become the advocate for 10 other children in the school to help them gain sponsors. And my first thought was "I'm sponsored out."
You betcha. There's my compassion in a nutshell. It ain't pretty, is it?
But something in her message grabbed me. She referenced Tom Davis whose book I'd reviewed a couple years ago and my curiosity got me. I linked through.
Only one child of the ten was left. His name was Setotaw and he had a tooth out of alignment and his zipper was undone. And I looked in his face, thinking, "How many $35 monthly commitments can I make?" When I saw a vision of my receipt from Target a couple days prior. All we'd gone in for was the bag of candy each child is allowed to pick at the end of October for our Reformation Day party. Let me just say my receipt MORE than covered Setotaw's care.
I can't un-know that I spent more on CANDY in October than it would take to care for a child.
What have we come to?
A friend of mine posted last week that Americans spent 6.7 billion dollars on Halloween this year. (Or maybe that is last year's figure. Someone else commented that this year it was closer to 7.) Gee, I don't know people, can we think of something better to do with SIX POINT SEVEN BILLION DOLLARS?
In case you are interested, I immediately inquired about Setotaw. Because how on earth could I stand before God someday and say, "Well, the candy seemed more important at the time." And by the time I'd emailed her, three other families had stepped in to lay claim to him. He was the last child of her 10 sponsored and he became the prize. I am saddened that my hesitation lost me out on his sponsorship. That precious boy.
And if you are still interested, she's already posted 10 more in need of sponsors. It would appear that I might be able to hand deliver letters and gifts to your child if you were so inclined.
HA! Interesting....I was just revisiting the blog and ran across this. Use it as you will. Or better, should. :)