Thursday, February 16, 2006

Today, while wandering through blogland...

I found myself in New England, enjoying the thoughtful words of one of my brother's friends.

I get so tired of political cynicism and meanness (though I've gone on a few rants and bitter tirades myself...and probably will again.) In fact, only today I started getting angry...just thinking about Walmart...

...how they get away with spending as little as possible on health care for their employees,....the many lawsuits (that they have yet to win one of) against them for forcing employees to work *after* they punch out,...their bullying of manufacturers and farmers to lower their prices or lose their business....forcing those manufacturers to move their factories to other countries...(at least that's what they said on NPR, so it must be true)

I like to think that my anger is aimed at injustice...at the perpetuation of poverty....at the Rich and Powerful taking advantage of the poor and defenseless.

But even as my emotions rise and my accusatory words start to spew....

I can't ignore the fact that I am not really working very hard to actually defend. I AM the Rich and Powerful in the world. My abiltity to type this post on my iBook only makes me ridiculous in my attempt to point a finger....if I am not doing anything to feed the poor.

All of that to say that this post gave a refreshing (at least to me) and thoughtful perspective about positive....effective political dialogue. You'll find no bashing.

8 comments:

Daniel Rudd said...

so Ang. I agree.
Let's start feeding helping the poor.

I don't want to be an oppressor anymore.

So what should we do first?

ANTI-ONION SOCIETY said...

great link, ang. i often don't enter political discussions because they seem to dissolve quickly into party lines and cattiness, solving nothing and pushing people farther apart...this post was refreshing to read.

ANTI-ONION SOCIETY said...

Ang, Ginger was singing in the backseat after we saw you at the school Wednesday.. I think it was a medley:
"ang...was not a nice girl..because she got into the sugars..but she was nice...just got into the sugars..
...AunT Ang-e-la and
Uncle RYYY-an..could not keep themselves away..
so they THREW
(chorus)
Daniel in the lion's den!!
DANIEL IN THE LION'S DEN , but the angel came to rescue him and KEPT him SAFE in the LION'S DEN!!!.."

PastorJohn said...

Ang,

I oscillate! Sometimes I work to change society and government. Then I give up and stick to doing my own projects to help. I hope I am saved from cynicism by St. Francis: "It is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness." I am reminded of Jesus' words that the poor we always have with us. Which means I have no excuse for not doing what I can do? Thanks for your challenging thoughts! Pastor John

Anonymous said...

I dont thik i would worry about wlamart. If you dont want to shp there. dont. the thing most people like about walmart is that there are too many poor people shopping there. they would rather be at upscale stores and expensive coffy shoppes. who benefitsf rom the low prices? who benefits from overpriced coffee? i missed the NPR segment so Idont know what upset you, are the suppliers losing mony by selling to walmart?
but i like the idea of eliminating the costly not essential things we spend money on to give to the poor. i admire you for taking that first step.

Annoyed said...

Ahh! I'm getting dumber reading the posts from anonymous...

Anonymous, go re-read her post and use a little reasoning as you interpret the writing. I'll "admire you for taking that first step."

Ang said...

anonymous,

Please accept my apologies for the ungracious response from my "annoyed" reader. Your comments are welcome :)

I do think you missed my actual frustrations with Walmart, though. I AM worried about Walmart....and I think more people should be.

The people that shop there....are not my complaint. Nor do I prefer more upscale shopping centers simply to avoid shopping with any socio-economic 'class' of people. It saddens me that the people that shop there are perpetuating a vicious cycle...for themselves. Creating more poverty.

Yes....the suppliers are losing money by selling to Walmart! But they have to, in order to survive. Because Walmart is the largest and most powerful...they bully their suppliers into compliance. For example, apple growers in America have suffered greatly this year, because Walmart has pushed them to lower their prices beyond what they can afford....So Walmart has recently started buying their apples from China instead...for even lower prices, so that people here can save a few cents! (at the cost of our own local economy)

Some grocery stores are committed to buying produce from local farmers...like Meijer. (though I recognize there may be flaws in their business practices) I usually try to shop there or even smaller local grocery stores like Plumb's (who generously give back to our community).

All of that to say....(again)....I don't BLAME Walmart for the problem of poverty and injustice. Their system only works because people shop there.

And before I point my finger....I have a lot to adjust in my own life....to truly be a loving follower of Christ to the 'least of these.'

Anonymous said...

ang, thanks for welcoming me back. i think your friend missread my note I said "I DO admire you for that" but hey at least you've got one loyal reader quick to shutdown outsiders. i personallly don't like walmart--especially if the don't buy local apples (or peaches down here in the south).that's just dumb.I hadn't heard that before, but catholic or protestant i still agree with my first thought. taking money we'd spend on overpriced coffee or cigarettes or six flags and giving it to local poor people will do more than bashing walmart or piggly wiggly or whatever. if the problem is that people shop there. do you have list of stores not local but national that you can recommend?
sorry anoyed is getting dumber i doubt its all my fault. i'll not write again so he should be ok.lol
you seem like a nice person.