Night before last, John and I watched the Diane Sawyer interview with Brad Pitt
. I learned quite a bit about him, including the fact that his name generates more than 2 million hits on Google. Well, here's one more, Brad!
Although the promos for the interview hawked the fact that Diane was going to ask the burning question: "Why did your marriage end?" (something I knew he wouldn't answer -- I mean, come on!) the bigger purpose of his appearance on the show was evident right away. As a spokesman for the non-partisan charity group ONE.org
, Brad wanted to bring some attention to the terrible domestic/health crisis in Africa. More importantly, he was there to shed light on how each of us can make a difference in the fight to end extreme hunger and the spread of AIDS in this impoverished nation.Did you know that for the cost of ONE music CD--just $16--you could fund ONE FULL YEAR's education (tuition, books, uniform) for an African child?
And these are kids who want dearly to go to school. Watching the footage from Africa, I was sickened with myself for all the money I waste every day on frivolous things I don't really need.
A couple of years ago, Oprah did a TV special
about the children of Africa. It was humbling and heartbreaking. I watched it with a lump in my throat the whole time--both for the suffering these children endure, and the simple joy they take in things like a new toy or a pair of shoes. These kids--mostly AIDS orphans--literally walked miles to attend the "party" Oprah threw for them. I'll never forget that glimpse into their lives, and I wish Oprah would air the special every year.
Yes, there is poverty and need in our country, too. But not like this. I hope we never know this kind of anguish, and I think we have a responsibility--not only as one of the richest nations in the world, but also as feeling, caring human beings--that we don't turn away in apathy when we see our neighbors suffering.
It's a downer post today, I know. But sometimes life isn't all romance and flowers. And even this can have a happy ending! We have to start somewhere . . .