Friday, December 24, 2004

Gift of freedom?

Christmas in Iraq
Pic source: Sign of the Times

I went to the PG County mall in Maryland, one of the most ghetto fabulous strip malls in the area. It was crazy today with all the people just hanging, spending, and there was people just all over the place. It's funny how people are just so obsessed with spending. Reminds me of after 9/11, when Bush told Americans not to worry about anything, just "go shopping". Shopping seems to be the opiate for the masses, and even poor folks will sacrifice to get the latest X-box or whatever is the latest, hottest toy for their peoples.

When a soldier ends his life with his own gun
Beef is tryin to figure out what to tell his son
Beef is oil prices and geopolitics
Beef is Iraq, the West Bank, and Gaza Strip

Mos Def "What's Beef?"

I remember one time I was in one of those chatrooms. I was talking to mostly right-wingers. I was telling them that it was a good idea for all Americans to give at least 10% of their income to the Iraqi people. The responses:

I don't think you are going to get far pushing such an agenda.
Screw you! I'm not giving 1% of my money to the Iraqi people!
We're giving all we can in the form of tax dollars!

I even got into it with one person. This person was like, "we have given the ultimate gift to the Iraqi people, their freedom." She went on to say that her relative is over there, so that is her contribution. I grilled her. I was like, "What have you done for the Iraqi people, personally." After a heated exchange, she said something alone the lines of "Kiss my ass, I'm not giving anything to the Iraqi people, nor do I intend to."

I'm not now going to go through some argument about the war, but I just think that it is messed up the responses of these people. Do they represent the feelings of the whole majority? Or put it this way, would the people rushing to the shopping malls find it in their hearts to give anything to the Iraqis after what has been done to parts of their country?

I think that it is the best thing in the new year for people to get away from being so self absorbed and just ignoring what is going on in the world. A good place to start is The American Institute of Philanprothy,which lists charities which are helping in Iraq.

This Christmas, ask yourself, where does your money go? Toward mindless consumption and big corporations, or to help people? I know my choice.

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