Jul 30, 2015

22, 3000, 300

Yesterday I was driving around Atlanta doing errands, going to medical appointments, so I listened to talk radio. 

Every station I dialed into, two topics were top of mind: the news about the senseless killing of the lion, Cecil, in Zimbabwe, and the Tom Brady decision by the NFL Commissioner Goodell to uphold the 4 game suspension. 

And on and on and on the commentary and discussions went. 

The sports related decision was being treated by some as a definitive test for the history and legacy of the NFL, some of the talk show guys discussing this topic were going so fast and with such rigor that they were short of breath.  And then the callers, such vitriol, such passion around judgement and predictions and opinions and perspectives about Tom Brady, his future, the potential of all the legal possibilities, and on and on and on and on.  Really ! 

~ ~ CECIL ~ ~ 

I am really sad that Cecil, the magnificent lion, was killed in such a senseless manner and for what ? For some guy to boast and brag about his hunting adventures, his win over the animal kingdom, his next selfie with the victims head ?  

Yes it is senseless and crazy and sad and horrible.  Yes, Yes, Yes ! 

And then all the social commentary, all the rage and fury, all the links posted on Facebook, all the tweets, the 2 minute lead summary stories on the evening news and all the cable networks and for what.  
Cecil will be soon forgotten.  Unfortunately the Tom Brady story will go on ad nauseam because the NFL season is around the corner.  

There are so many significant injustices and tragedies going on all over the world, some right here in Atlanta, and unless the movement is popular, the topic of the day, the lead on the evening news, the horrors, the crimes, the dark side of humanity, it continues on and on and on and on - without social commentary, without Facebook posts, without tweets, without much care from the immediate and hurry up newsflash world we are all a part of. 

Some of the stories that aren't grabbing headlines, stories that aren't sexy, that aren't worthy of the vitriol and passion and jammed call in phone lines at top radio shows: 


Two or three years ago Time Magazine ran a cover story on US Veterans taking their lives, the statistic then was 18 veterans committed suicide everyday.  Fast forward to today, the number is now 22 per day.  

TWENTY TWO SOLDIERS, 22 US WAR VETERANS kill themselves everyday.  

Mental health, PTSD, not able to cope returning home from the war, drugs, alcohol, addiction..... on and on and on and where are the headlines, where is the outrage, where are the tweets ? 

Imagine the mother or wife who gets the call today with the news that her son or daughter or husband has killed themselves and that same mother has to watch a news lead about the senseless killing of Cecil, the lion.  


During the Ebola breakout that ravaged several countries in Western Africa last year, I read and followed stories on the development of the Ebola and other vaccines.  Another statistic I learned of that I can't get out of my head, according to UNICEF 3000 children die everyday in the world, mainly in Africa, from malaria.  

THREE THOUSAND.  I was stunned, I had no idea  

Finally a malaria vaccine is on the horizon. Just recently the European Medicines Agency gave a newly developed vaccine a green light.  The World Health Organization (WHO) will soon be providing recommendations by year end on implementation, affordability, cost-effectiveness, and all that goes with a development that is this significant.  And thanks to the likes of the GATES foundation, the vaccine will be implemented in 2016.   


The other statistics I recently learned about that makes me sick to my stomach and every person living in the city of Atlanta should be outraged about, writing letters about, tweeting, posting, discussing at bookclub, at their small church groups, at lunch after their morning tennis matches, according to the FBI, 300 minor aged girls are lured into sex trafficking in Atlanta every month. 

Under aged girls, having sex with evil, perverse, sick, adult males, who pay for this.  Men who schedule long layovers in Atlanta and then car rental themselves out to the suburbs for sex with a minor aged girl. And then have the presence of mind to catch their flights home to be with their families in middle America somewhere.  CNN recently ran a story about this and light continues to shine on this horrific state of affairs in the city of Atlanta.