This post was published to Technical Musings at 3:25:50 PM 11/20/2007
You might be wondering what this has to do with technology. If I could ask for your indulgence for a moment, I think you'll see the connection. For all of our friends outside the US, Thursday is a national holiday. November 25th is Thanksgiving Day. This day is supposed to commemorate the day the pilgrims (Puritans) shared a peaceful meal when the native population after a rough winter. For me, Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate my life and to look for ways to bring the same hope and encouragement to others in my situation. Anyone who reads my blog will know that I am greatly concerned with making a difference in the world. Right now, the people of Bangladesh are in terrible pain. Tragic events there have separated families. Children are hungry and dying. When we look at the devastation there, we might think, "There's nothing I can do. It's so far away." With so much turmoil there, it is difficult to know where to begin. Television cameras and other broadcasting technology have however, made us aware of the problem. And technology may provide a partial solution. We may not be able to go to remote countries to assist those in need personally, but we can and must do something. Go to the Red Cross website, to see what can be donated. If Bangladesh seems too far way, begin here at home. Get your local church, synagogue, mosque, or, community group to crochet, knit, or, collect hats, scarves, and, maintenance for the homeless and needy. Don't pretend we don't see them every day. Technology beams images of these people into our living rooms and what we as a society need to understand is that any one of us you one paycheck away from being in that situation. Did you know that one in 10 people had to choose between buying food and buying other daily necessities such as medications? What does that say about us both as people and as a nation? What kind of people do we want to be? I know, "I'd love to donate something, but I don't have money or time". While I'm proud to announce that beginning today, you do. You can simply go to the grocery store, buy extra roll of toilet paper, paper towels, diapers, or other nonfood items not covered by food stands and bring them to a nonfood pantry in your area. If you don't have a nonfood pantry in your area, talk to your local churches about being a drop-off point. It's these types is essential nonfood items that many people go without. What kind of technology do we have today? I know we've spent many hours discussing the benefits of technology for society, and I'm sure will spend many more. Right now though, we as a country; as people, have a decision to make. We have technology to help people in need, what are we going to use it? Are we so complacent; so convinced there's nothing we can do that we won't even try? Here's something simple you can do. Go to the Salvation Army website and make a small donation in your state. There, technology allows us to be charitable without leaving home. Still not enough? Unable to donate to the Salvation Army or other organization? Okay, try this. Right now, as you're sitting there surfing on the Internet, you could be feeding hungry people all over the world. You can do it without even leaving your computer chair. It doesn't require any money and there's no extensive amount of time necessary you can even get your children involved in this activity. What is it? Just go to freerice.com. As you increase your vocabulary, the sponsors of the website will donate rice to the UN to be distributed to needy countries. Currently correct answer you get, 10 grains of rice are donate it. The more vocabulary you know, the more you can donate. It's that simple. Yes, this is legit and for proof, you can go to CBS news, and look under the CBS evening news. If you know of any other programs or websites where people can make a difference during this time of need, please let me know. We have the technology to solve these problems and only by employing it correctly, can we truly make a great Thanksgiving for all. Please, remember to give thanks all year round.