Friday, December 20, 2013


I blog more than most YAGM and to be honest, sometimes I'm not sure that that's actually a good thing.  I feel like my blogs aren't as poignant, as meaningful because I write more often.  In each, I try to communicate what I see here in Mexico but often struggle to understand exactly what it is I'm seeing.  Or what it means.  Nonetheless, I felt called to write this particular blog because of some things that have been in the US news lately.

Those of you who are familiar with my Facebook well know that I often use it to post political messages.  So far in my blog, I have intentionally avoided that topic because of the way it divides whoever may be reading my blog.  But in this case, division is what I'd like to call out.

I  was recently asked to describe the United States to someone who has never been there.  I didn't know where to start.  What part of our culture do I talk about?  What parts should I leave out?  While the US is certainly a great country, there are, nonetheless, traits not so glamorous.  Consumerism run amuck.  Wealth disparity.  Factions.

Despite our name, we are not a country united.  Debates over what race Santa Claus is or whether a tv network should suspend someone for their comments create divisions galore.  It's interesting that these arguments would make almost no sense here.  Who would care what Santa looks like or what someone said?  Compared to the challenges of life where I am currently living, these fights are seemingly trivial.  What's more important is where clean water will come from, how schooling will be paid for, and what kind of work will be available tomorrow.  These are this real debates being waged right now in Mexico.

As Christmas approaches, maybe we can put an end to this petty 'war' we're in for a little while and focus more on the real issues at hand: poverty, discrimination, power imbalance, hatred for other human beings.  If we can do that, perhaps we'll be taking a step in the right direction.

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