"Join us in rejecting the ti(red) notion that shopping is a reasonable response to human suffering"
AMEN! I have been pretty quiet on this topic until now, I am done. I am sick of everywhere I go (Sprint, Gap ext...) assaulting me with this glorified view of AIDS. When I use the word glorified I mean glossed over, almost not real. I understand Bono's platform, he wants to draw attention to a world wide epidemic, I applaud him for that. I even get that teenagers who mistakenly believe that they are untouched by AIDS want to look really cool and support social justice. I don't care about your fashion, I do care that the money you spend at the mall can in some way go to the relief of this horrifying disease. Where I start to get really angry is when a campaign that you spend 110,000,000 on has only brought in 18,000,000. Do you even have a clue how much that money could have eased suffering?
(I realize I am ranting, but I just wanted to write and not censor.)
I don't know, my heart is just heavy. How do you cause people to relinquish the hold that money has on them? How do you bring the issues of Human Trafficking, Homelessness, Foster Care, Adoption, AIDS, Addictions, ext...to light and have people really understand how they can make a difference. Does it take seeing the pain that the above issues bring to light? If we talked to someone with AIDS or who has been in the foster care system for 12 years, would we get it then? I am reminded of a conversation I had over Thanksgiving with my friend Terry. At that time Terry had fallen back into Alcoholism and had been drinking mouthwash, not eating, and was constantly shaking. He came to us and said he wanted to die but that God just wouldn't let him go. All he wanted to do was go home (heaven.) Michael (boss) and I had a long talk about really what did Terry have to live for. The man is 47, he has no family, he does not exist to them anymore. He can't drive, he lost his license in a few to many DWI's. He lives at a mens shelter and he know Christ and of what he knows of him, he believes he would be much better off at Christs side than here. He is right. This might be obvious to all of you but it took me a while. All I saw was the pain Terry was in, I just wanted it to end. God can use Terry's addiction, he can use a foster child that has been "forgotten" in the system, he can use Bono's cries for justice. God has not abandoned those in pain or those who want to call attention to it.
I guess to sum up, I do dislike the Red campaign, I will not be sporting a shirt but I guess I feel like it is better than nothing. I want to hear these issues spoken in the day to day life, even if it is by two vapid girls in the Gap dressing room. I also wish that instead of buying the tee-shirt that we would all donate to International Justice Mission, but you can't win them all. May the God who is the author of Lamentations 3 use the cries of the addicted, lonely, hurting and lost to not only bring Glory to his name, but to comfort others in the same state.