On Tuesdays, I have an extra 40 minutes of planning period, but today I am prepared well ahead of time. Today, I am using my free time to read the news, and I can't believe what I'm reading.
I'm not sure why, but in America, I feel like I am exposed to less of the atrocities being committed in the wider world. I seriously doubt that in the last month I have been gone, the world has suddenly taken an extreme turn for the worse. Perhaps it's my location - I am closer to hot spots where these things happen. America can sometimes be a little safe haven where many are sheltered (not intentionally) from things happening overseas. We are separated on East and West by oceans and therefore feel like we are separate from these things.
Being in Asia, I feel like I am closer to the horrors. When I search for "Korea" in the news, the first things I see involve North Korea. Today, I read about how they refused aid from South Korean government when the last typhoon hit, despite tens of thousands being homeless and over 100 killed. The country has been experiencing torrential rains, and with the addition of typhoons and tropical storms, the people of North Korea simply have no food, and their homes are being destroyed. The government, the people who are supposed to look out for the country, refuses to accept aid from their neighbors. I just simply can't believe it. They would rather see their people suffer and die, than to take a hit to their pride by accepting help. What adds to my dismay, and grows my feelings to include those of absolute disgust, is that they stipulated they will accept help if it is exactly what they ask for (which does not include food for their people). Hello! Ever head of "beggars can't be choosers"?! I'm disgusted.
Of course, with all the increasing violence in the middle east (when will it stop "increasing"?!), you almost can't help but see the headlines on a daily basis. After reading about the 55th suicide bombing this year in Afghanistan, I don't understand how the world just keeps getting darker and darker. It hurts my heart to hear the personal stories of teens watching their friends get blown away before their eyes, prisoners being held for their defiance of the governments actions and policies being tormented in hidden cells and dark back rooms. It almost seems like a movie, but it's real life. It's depressing.
Add in the tensions and (excuse my French) bullshit of the upcoming Presidential elections, I want to just hand in my citizenship and move to Antarctica. I mean, the world is already crumbling before our eyes, and we have a President who does little and less about it (and I'm not talking about the things that aren't American business... I mean the American ambassador being murdered in the streets, American soldiers being killed by the ones they are training to protect themselves, etc). Sure, Bush probably made some mistakes. But at least he stood up for our country when we were attacked, he responded with some kind of passion and determination, rather than making slimy excuses and preaching pretty words with absolutely no content or commitment to doing anything to protect your country.
I love being an American; I think we get a lot of things right. But, lately I'm not so proud. I am just tired of the news, tired of the horrible things happening and tired of the people who take pledges to protect us doing nothing about the things that threaten us. I'm thankful that South Koreans don't seem to harbor any ill-will toward Americans, or I'd be in a heap of trouble. I'm thankful to be away from America during this election season, and I'm thankful for absentee voting, because you can bet your bottom dollar I will be voicing my opinion in November.
I pray for our world in need of love and Jesus. I understand there are many Christians who are hypocrites, and I may fall into that category from time to time, but I know that loving Jesus brings love to a dark world. Knowing Christ, truly seeking him, can only lead to better days. And even though I don't like him, I will pray for our President. I will pray for the people in countries that are suffering: from economic hardship, from natural disasters, from corrupt governments, from extremist terror groups exerting power over those who cannot stand up to them, and killing those who do.
To my readers who are not Christians, or who support Obama, or who think this is pointless chatter - I'm sorry you wasted your time reading this. But, I just had to write it. It's my blog anyway....