Passing over Our Future

Posted 6/12/2008 by CtotheB in Labels: , , , ,
Riding through Brick City last weekend on my way back from Freedom Schools' Training in Tennessee, an urgent and sobering feeling of inadequacy came over me. Throughout the week in Knoxville and Clinton (no Billary), I learned about the dire situation so many of our nation's children call reality. 

In Jersey alone...
  •  1 in 8 children are poor.
  • In 2005, 244,000 children were uninsured
  • A baby is born poor every 33 minutes
  • The State of New Jersey spends 2.6 as much per prisoner as it spends on its public school pupils
But two questions hit me as I rode the Freedom Ryde back could this be going on in the wealthiest nation on earth, and how can so many people pretend it does not exist?

I thought about my own life, and how blessed I feel everyday. Should I feel selfish for being comfortable in a world, or dare even, a state where this is going on? 

How can I relate to kids who deal with these hardships? Would they see my college education as a silver spoon? Could I reach them even though my "all-nighters" and having 3 papers due in a week would not be considered "real" enough?

And what about my internal struggles...could I overcome the inner voice of doubt that beckons me back into the ivory tower of ignorance?

So as all these questions swirled in my head, and inadequacy became stronger and stronger, I realized that having the option of "dealing" with this problem is a luxury in itself. 

If you saw a building burning with no firetrucks in sight, would you call 911?

If you saw an old lady struggling with a large package, would you offer your help?

So why are people so comfortable driving through the hood, seeing all that is going on, and doing nothing about it? 

A toast to giving our future a future.

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