This I Believe

Tia - Oriskany, New York
Entered on October 23, 2007

This I Believe

I believe that all humans are beautiful, regardless of race, color or creed. We all have the right to life, liberty and security of person. This is not just an American doctrine, it is a world doctrine. We are all part of one world, a global village.

I also believe that America is still the land of opportunity. We have a government that recognizes that our children need education, health care; including mandatory vaccinations, and healthy foods to live and prosper. We have access to as much clean, filtered water as we need. We turn on the faucet and there it is, we do little but pay a monthly bill to be able to drink, bath and fill up our inflatable pools. When you see the raising obesity rate in this country, we are obviously well fed. We have a government that we control, they work for us.

What I do not understand is that we, a wealthy nation, gives less then 1% of our budget to foreign assistance. As we rush off to work, showering, getting our children ready for school, and grabbing our $3 Starbucks coffees, more then 1.2 billion people around the world live on less then $1 a day. Many African children do not have a school to attend and Starbucks coffee would not be the necessity that we have made it to be. In fact, seventy percent of Sub- Saharan Africa lives on less then the cost of one cup of coffee a day. Do most Americans know that 200 million go hungry everyday and that 5.4 million children die from poverty related illness every year? We spend more per year on pet food in our country then the average African lives on. What’s worse is every 15 seconds a child in Africa dies from disease associated with lack of access to safe drinking water. Annually, 1 million Africans die of Malaria and two million are lost to AIDS. All very preventable.

Yes, we have poor, hungry families here. But, we also have the resources to help our own. Our problems are minimal in comparison to those faced by Africa. If our children were dying from lack of food, water or medicine, our government would step in. Other countries would step in. Africa’s answers lie in education for all, nutrition, medicine for preventable disease and fair trade. America would not be giving a hand out by aiding our neighbors in regaining the strength to become the flourishing society that they could be. It is our social responsibility to help given our resources. In this day and age, no child should die form hunger, lack of water, and preventable disease.

I also believe that helping their part of the world helps our part of the world. While we fight the war on terror, our reputation in many places of the world has been somewhat tarnished to say the least. Sure we can overpower other countries, but we can also empower them. Becoming a nation that helps those most in need, will do more for our national security then any war ever could. By transforming the future of countries in need, we transform place in the global community and become the land of true opportunity.

What I believe is that Americans can over come anything. We are a nation of strong people, with even stronger values. We all believe that no child should die needlessly, that all humans are created equal and that we are all part of one world. I believe that we all have the power to change this crisis. I believe that campaigns like the ONE campaign to make poverty history and the RED campaign have been embraced by millions of Americans already. What I really believe is that you can take a few moments out of your busy lives to be a hero. You can start by educating yourselves, joining these campaigns and speaking out starting with a visit to or