This was a great week on Communicating Across Boundaries. We went from wrinkled ladies to third culture kid arrogance to beautiful pottery to recognizing that many times our worst fears are never realized! And the wonderful thing about this? – you were able to hear voices other than my own. Thank you Cecily, Stef, and Robynn as well as all of you for your part in making the discussions rich and meaningful.
Today I sit with my niece Melanie, drinking a latte, and grateful for family. I don’t write as much as I should about my extraordinary family – but let’s just say that there are a lot of moving parts — personalities, passions, and people. Today one of those moving parts is across from me sharing a slice of life.
On to the week wrap-up….
On Global Health: I try to keep a pulse on what is going on in global health through a variety of sources. Some of those include Save the Children, Partners in Health, and World Vision. While the western world battles with diabetes, obesity, and a combination of the two, the developing world is still in a place of battling tropical diseases that cause malnutrition, anemia, serious developmental delays and more. These are present in communities that are largely neglected and unknown. They are Neglected Diseases of Neglected People. The article linked cites the case for responding to these and argues that the return on investment is well worth making this a public health priority. Take a look at the article and see what you think.
On Women: I will quote directly from an article that I think is a provocative, ‘must-read’ written by a woman who is African-American and in her words sees “where race and feminism collide in ways I can’t reconcile…”
First, the promotion and marketing of abortions in The United States of America was born out of an effort to control the population of African-Americans. Today, the largest majority of locations offering abortions are housed in African-American or Latino neighborhoods. One of every three abortions in the U.S. are African-American children. When numbers and statistics like these collide, I put it on the same level with Female Gendercide in China.
I understand that it’s convenient to go on promoting abortions as a ‘women’s rights issue’ without regard to the fact that abortion has cut into the African-American population by over 30 million lives, yet it’s appalling and reprehensible to ignore the facts.” [From A Deeper Story – Why I Respectfully Decline Feminism]. I urge you to read both the piece and the links within this quote in Why I Respectfully Decline Feminism.
On Friendship and Dialogue: Remember last year when the United States was divided not by Red and Blue, but by Support Chick-fil-A or Boycott Chick-fil-A? This year the anniversary of that day went by with barely a nod. Why? Why did something that caused such controversy not even come up? Largely because Dan Cathy, an older, white, avowed conservative Evangelical quietly began reaching out to the man who organized the boycott – a gay man who is married to his partner. It is an amazing story of reaching across ideological divide, not giving up your beliefs, but being willing to listen, to learn, and to forge an unlikely friendship. This is a story that should have been on the front page of every newspaper. As you read it, I believe you’ll be challenged to offer grace and friendship despite polar opposite beliefs. Read Dan and Me: My Coming Out as a Friend of Dan Cathy and Chick-fil-A – you won’t be disappointed.
On Film: Finally – this weekend the Big Event of Hollywood is on. It’s the Oscars.We are a big film family so will be watching and texting family members with either shouts of triumph or groans of despair. Will you be watching this event?
On my Beside Stand: I’m finishing the book First They Killed My Father with tears in my eyes. So hard to read. Yet another reminder of the grace of human resilience. Another book has come on my stand and I’m already immersed. Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity by Katherine Boo. I first learned of this book through this blog post and wish I was going on vacation so I could curl up and read this 24 hours straight. More on this book after I’ve read and digested all that it offers.
What’s on your coffee table, bedside stand, or heart? Would love to hear through the comments.