Tuesday, April 26, 2005
The Widespread World Poverty
I was watching ex-Prim minister of Britain Mr. Major talking about the poverty in the world in Charlie Rose show. He stated out of 6 billion people in earth 3 billion lives under 2 dollar a day. Statistics showed that 12.5% of Americans are below the poverty line. Millions of people die every year second to hunger and disease in Africa. A lot of people in America do not know how poverty looks like. Let me give you this example. When I was young boy in Egypt in our building of 8 floors has about 50 families most are not rich but getting by and only about 4 families are struggling and other people help them. Now there may be 4 families are getting by and other families are struggling. Struggling means that you are killed every day you do not know if you will have a good meal to your children or you will afford the medicine if they get sick. It is a daily suffering. Fasting in the month of Ramadan in Islam is the best practical example to the rich to feel for the poor. When I was in Medical School in Egypt I usually can predict who will join an extreme religious group. Poverty no doubt is a big contributing factor. There is no excuse to the widespread poverty is the world. We have both the money and the human and the material resources. The inability to use an innovative economic policy to achieve just that result in a great economic deficit in the world economy. We are just wasting the human and material resources that could have been used properly. If you are a caring person or even if you do not care it is for the self-interest of all of us to fight poverty. Poverty is one of the main roots of terrorism. It says to the other side you do not care about me if I got poor or oppressed. You are even positively contributing to that for your own self-interest. In a verse in Quran God recite what the unbelievers said to the messenger "we feed those whom God if wanted could have fed!!". This is our mission in earth is to do God 's work to feed the poor and alleviate the sufferings of other humans. Why God have created all of these sufferings. My answer is simple why should you go to heaven eternally for only few years of suffering in earth. Religions should not be competing for who is more generous to the poor but how we can work it together to solve the widespread poverty of the world. It is not about domination but it is about co-existence.