“Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.”
WORLD HUNGER STATISTICS:
-21,000 people die of starvation worldwide each day.
-Poor nutrition causes nearly half (45%) of deaths in children under five - 3.1 million children each year.
-As of 2015 (2011 statistics), the World Bank has estimated that there were just over 1 billion poor people in developing countries who live on $1.25 a day or less.
-The world produces enough food to feed everyone. The principal problem is that many people in the world still do not have sufficient income to purchase (or land to grow) enough food.
DO WE CARE ENOUGH TO CHANGE?
You may be like I once was, aware of those that are hungry in distant places, no one you know, no one who affects you. You may have a moment of remorse when there is a break from your favorite TV show and an ad for helping hungry children comes on. Maybe you think, well I am just scraping by to survive. Maybe you cannot afford to help. Maybe you reassure yourself that there is nothing you can do, and it is best not to think about this global human crisis. Why feel bad over something you can’t fix. Except no… none of that is really true. Not really.
Dr. Martin Luther King
THE BREAKTHROUGH MOMENT
I watched a documentary on Netflix, one I recommend every comfortable, warm, fed person watches called, “Living on a Dollar”. It was about 4 Americans who go to Guatemala to experience what it is like to live in extreme poverty for a month. The premise being that a huge percentage of people are living on less than one dollar a day. So what people like me and you may spend on a night out, is what many families are living on for a month or longer.
This really spoke to me, and though I had been aware of poverty and hunger before, I never realized the scope of it. I began to do some research. The moment for me that changed everything about my passive stance was when I realized, really realized, that 20,000 people a day die, not from war, not from heart failure, not from being in some accident, or some fatal disease, they died needlessly simply because they had no food. I broke down, thinking, “how can I ever defend allowing this at the end of my life? How can I ever stand before what lays beyond this life and say I did nothing?” I can’t, and I won’t.
The global hunger crisis is an epidemic, millions of people dying year after year for no other reason, no other reason for god’s sake, except they are starving to death. Can you imagine? Please take a moment, for all you consider to be at the heart of what is dear to you, and think how we will ever justify this. If you are religious, how will you ever stand before God and explain this tragedy? If you are spiritual consider how your soul will ever pay back such neglect of all that is fundamental in harmonizing with the universe. If you are practical, intellectual, scientific, how will you go forward in any kind of good conscious, simply counting yourself in with the lucky ones who dodged the bullet, with no more right to life than any other man, woman or child on this earth. We are a family, one human family. Our very lives are the result of the love of thousands. We must return that love in action, not just ideology, but actual, tangible action.
No one group, nation, or individual owns this planet or any of her resources. This planet is our shared home, our shared support system within which we must find a way to take care of the whole of our human family. There is more than enough to go around, sadly, there is not enough money to pay for it, and there never will be. We need to transcend beyond our conceptual limitations of currency, of class, of have’s and have not’s. That is not balance, it is not justice, it is not fair to billions of people who did nothing wrong except find themselves born into communities suffering from extreme poverty. They are not lazy, these communities are often limited in their access to resources, and some have simply been victims of circumstances the advantaged populations have created, and taken advantage of.
We are each a part of this, and being so, as we change, so will the landscape of our social, environmental and even political world.
· Extreme Poverty- “The causes of poverty include poor people's lack of resources, an extremely unequal income distribution in the world and within specific countries, conflict, and hunger itself. As of 2015 (2011 statistics), the World Bank has estimated that there were just over 1 billion poor people in developing countries who live on $1.25 a day or less. This compares with compared with 1.91 billion in 1990, and 1.93 billion in 1981. This means that 17 percent of people in the developing world lived at or below $1.25 a day in 2011, down from 43 percent in 1990 and 52 percent in 1981.”
· Harmful Economic Systems- “Essentially control over resources and income is based on military, political and economic power that typically ends up in the hands of a minority, who live well, while those at the bottom barely survive, if they do”
· Conflict- “For 2012, the first and latest year for which its estimates are available, the Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED) estimates that more than 172 million people were affected by conflict worldwide. Of this total 149 million or 87 percent were conflict-affected residents (CARs). Internally displaced persons (IDPs) accounted for another 18 million and refugees for five million. CRED says that the global total is higher because its figures only include 24 countries for which comparable and validated data are available.”
· Hunger is also a cause of poverty, and thus of hunger- It is a negative feedback loop. “By causing poor health, low levels of energy, and even mental impairment, hunger can lead to even greater poverty by reducing people's ability to work and learn, thus leading to even greater hunger.”
· Climate change- “Climate change is increasingly viewed as a current and future cause of hunger and poverty. Increasing drought, flooding, and changing climatic patterns requiring a shift in crops and farming practices that may not be easily accomplished are three key issues.”
- Meat Consumption- Massive amount of grain fed to our cattle and animals in the meat industry in amounts which could fed millions, all because we had to eat a burger, because we had to have steak. 'Jeremy Rifkin, president of the Foundation on Economic Trends in Washington, DC, states it succinctly: “People go hungry because much of arable land is used to grow feed grain for animals rather than people.” He offers as one example the Ethiopian famine of 1984, which was fueled by the meat industry. “While people starved, Ethiopia was growing linseed cake, cottonseed cake and rapeseed meal for European livestock,” he says. “Millions of acres of land in the developing world are used for this purpose. Tragically, 80 percent of the world’s hungry children live in countries with food surpluses which are fed to animals for consumption by the affluent.”'
'In 2008 a doctor named Jacques Diouf appealed to the world leaders that the cost to eradicate world hunger would be an estimated 30$ billion a year. To put this in perspective in 2012 the United States spent 737$ Billion on Military ‘Defense’.  We can see that those in power have prioritized war and military initiatives over world hunger and human rights issues over and over. Dr. Diouf gave a notably impassioned speech and provided all evidence of the ability to feed the poor and hungry in this world.
“Against that backdrop, how can we explain to people of good sense and good faith that it was not possible to find US $30 billion a year to enable 862 million hungry people to enjoy the most fundamental of human rights; the right to food and thus the right to life?... Regrettably the international community only reacts when the media beam the distressing spectacle of world suffering into the homes of the wealthy countries…The problem of food insecurity is a political one, “ Dr. Diouf concluded. “It is a question of priorities in the face of the most fundamental of human needs. And it is those choices made by Governments that determine the allocation of resources.” 
If we wanted to save lives this is our opportunity, and we could have an effect on a staggering percentage of the population of the world, all of it. (Excerpt from Universal Hidden Insight)
 Gucciardi, Anthony. About One Week of US Military Spending Would Wipe Out World Hunger. Infowars.com. June 24, 2013. <http;//www.infowars.com/about-one-week-of-us-military-spending-would-wipe-out-world-hunger/>
 Matthews, Christopher. The world only needs 30 billion dollars a year to eradicate the scourge of hunger. FAQ Newsroom. 2008. <http;//www.fao.org/newsroom/en/news/2008/1000853/>
WHAT DOES HELPING OTHERS DO FOR YOU?
Everywhere we look we see division, competition and the morally repugnant concepts of privilege. We fiercely cling to the things we feel are "ours", our space, our time, our money, and all we "own." We feel we have some innate given right to the comforts we enjoy: food, shelter, and basic luxuries. We tell ourselves, "I worked for this, so I deserve it." We pity those locked in inescapable circumstances which systematically repress their own sustainability, we may even look down on them to make it easier to look away. Our actions are often based on our worldview, the more we understand, the more our minds, and therefore our actions, change. The wrongful perception we have clung to collectively from the darkest ages we are finally awakening from is that we are somehow separate from one another. That is the biggest lie ever told, and we sell the soul of all we are everyday we continue to live by that false ideology. We are all connected. To neglect the suffering of others, is to likewise neglect our own selves. There is no part that does not affect the whole.
Our fear of losing something we feel entitled to or protective of in the interest of self preservation, coupled with our misunderstanding of the global bigger picture has resulted in an overwhelmingly apathetic generation. We have been desensitized into a state of consumerism and capitalism which is a far cry from the very soul of all humanity is meant to be.
We are more! We can dissolve the disconnect that has kept us from taking care of not only ourselves, but each other, and even inspire and empower more and more people to look at the root causes creating these world situations. The only cure for apathy is love and a deeper understanding. Love is taking responsibility for the effect we have on the world we are connected to. Love is changing our self from the inside out to become a connected, conscious, responsible participant in the family of humanity. Don't wait another moment to change the life of the ones who need us right now. Every moment that passes is another chance to change the world!
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If you enjoyed this article and want to learn more please look into my
grassroots self-published book: Universal Hidden Insight: the Connection Between Love, Existence and Reality. This book is a great tool for anyone who wants to understand the bigger picture and promises to leave you inspired and empowered! (Link included below)