When I woke up this morning I felt disturbed. Sung left for school and I took Lotus on a morning walk. The air quality is bad today. Cannot see the nearby hills. The sun is an angry red disc swollen four times its normal size. My throat got scratchy from breathing smoke as my mind marinated in feelings of doom and gloom.
I came home and turned on the TV. When I caught up on world news…I was shocked. What is happening?! I know pain and suffering is perpetual, but there’s an extraordinary amount of turbulence right now. It’s distressing to witness these historic events.
I watched video footages of hundreds of Afghan people swarming the airport runway in Kabul, desperately trying to squeeze on one of the last planes out of the country. Imagine sprinting with only the clothes on your back, trying to escape your country, not even knowing where your destination is.
Even more disturbing, I saw a video of someone who fell hundreds of feet to their death as an airplane took off. They were hanging on to the outside of the airplane. What has to be going through your mind to think your best option is to cling to the outside of the airplane? It’s horrible.
And from what I saw, those were all men at the airport. My heart is broken for the vulnerable women and girls who are hiding from the turmoil. I’m not anti-Islam in the slightest, but it’s an unfortunate fact that extremist regimes of any religion are especially repressive for women.
When immigration inevitably becomes a political debate topic, let’s remember the reality of refugees and take the side of humanity. No one wants to uproot themselves from their homeland unless they are forced to. People in this situation should be accepted without any further stress.
Wealthy nations need to welcome refugees. The USA military spent how many trillions of tax dollars fighting a war over the past two decades? So why are there homeless veterans? And why are we so stingy with accepting immigrants? Surely we have plenty of money to help the victims of the war. I wish our abundance would go to support USA citizens including anyone who desires to become a USA citizen.
Regardless of your political perspective, we can all agree that this chaotic crisis in Afghanistan is an inhumane disaster.
Now on the other side of the globe the aftermath of a devastating natural disaster is unfolding. As I write this, the 7.2 magnitude earthquake in Haiti has killed 1,300 people and injured thousands more people. The death toll is rising as the rubble is still being excavated. Hospitals are totally overwhelmed.
My best friend Kymiah is very worried because her Mom’s relatives live near the epicenter of the earthquake. They have been unable to communicate with their family and have no idea if they are safe or not. I am praying that her family is okay and that they’ll be in contact soon.
As I sit on my couch right now, it certainly puts my blessings into perspective. It was a lucky accident to be born on this particular piece of land instead of being born somewhere else in the world. Here, I am insulated from wars and political instability. We may have natural disasters in California, but living in a rich country means the government spares no cost to fight the wildfires.
If you think about it, the USA has a bigger budget to protect empty buildings than Haiti has to rescue humans trapped beneath destroyed buildings.
There are so many unprecedented events happening in the world today, and as they stack up it highlights steep inequality. Why do some people get to have everything and other people lack everything? Just think about how people in other countries are desperate to get a Covid vaccine, meanwhile here in the USA privileged people are throwing temper tantrums over wearing masks. Ugh. It makes me feel numb to my core.
Today, let’s all say a prayer for our world. 🙏
Update 8/18: Kymiah was finally able to get in contact with her relatives, and thankfully they are safe after the earthquake.