Sunday, April 13, 2008

Save The Whales??

Okay, so don't get me wrong... I'm just glad to see that celebrities are trying to stand up for something, but save the whales? I'm not saying I don't think whales aren't amazing creatures, but the celebrity animal rights craze is just getting a little silly. Daily I am bombarded with images and videos of celebrities that have adopted a cat and are trying to convince me that I will become a more fulfilled person if I follow along. I recently came across a list of the celebrities that support animal rights, and the amount of money they have donated, and needless to say I was amazed at the money that has been thrown at this issue.

The most recent event that has caught my attention involved "Hero's" star Hayden Panattiere. A video surfaced from Britain's Sky News of the actress and six other activists paddling on surfboards out into a cove in the town of Taiji in southwestern Japan, in an attempt to interfere with a dolphin hunt there. She was quoted saying "I feel the need to be a voice of worthy and important causes whose efforts impact the lives of every person on Earth." Later she added "Now more than ever the world has to come together to make changes. Just because certain cultures have had long-standing traditions does not mean that in today's world they are acceptable any longer. The world and the environment are evolving and that means we must change our ways as human beings as well."

Now, if I had read that quote and didn't know the situation that provoked it I would have thought Panettiere was truly on to something. Again, i'm not against animals rights, I'm just more for human rights. In my opinion we shouldn't be saying "save the whales," we should be saying " Save the HUMANS!" There is larger issues out there than whales. The one that lays heaviest on my heart is Africa. When speaking about Africa, one of the largest issues on the continent is the water crisis. A recent study done throughout Africa reports that nearly one million people do not have enough clean water to meet there basic human needs. As a result of this more than 2,500 children are dying daily.

Unsafe drinking water can carry diseases such as malaria, trypanosomiasis, intestinal worm infections, dengue, and schistosomiasis - as well as bacteria that can lead to deadly diarrheal infections, such as cholera and dysentery. These diseases and infections affect children and the elderly more because of their weakened immune systems. Entire villages and communities are being wiped out by the diseases living in this dirty water. Now, with all the money being thrown at animals, why are there places in the world where people are living like this.

It only takes $3500 to build a well and provide an entire community with clean water. Now if you're ready to get involved check out Six Mile Drought. This is a group from the Hattiesburg area that is putting their money where their mouth is. They are raising money to build as many wells as they can in Kenya. They recently raised enough to build their first well and are already on their way to a second. What can you do? They take donations and are also selling Six Mile Drought t-shirts with all the proceeds going directly into the well fund.

Until next time,

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