Warning! I am writing this only a little while after an experience that reminded me of one of the biggest issues we have as our societies have become immune to the very real problems of others.
It’s a rainy day in Toronto and with cover from the rain it is tolerable. I took twenty steps from my building before I came across an older gentleman who was soaking wet and asking for any change. I said ‘Sorry’ and I walked on. I cross the street but in the ten seconds it took me to cross the street I saw my whole life in perspective. I thought of how I won the embryo lottery. I was born to the right people at the right time in the right place. This older gentleman was not so lucky. I felt really guilty about having just said ‘sorry’ and walked on.
I stood at the pavement and just watched for a minute and I saw him asked a few others for change but no luck. He went towards the trash can and it seemed to me that he found a Tim Horton’s cup. Looked like he tried to drink what was left in it. I couldn’t take it anymore and walked back and gave him what I could. What made me really happy was another person did the same thing. He too had crossed and observed.
It is one of the most difficult things for me to accept, how we abandon those less fortunate than us. Why? Why are we desensitized to the plight of the homeless and those who are struggling? It is common thinking that these people are ‘junkies’ or ‘bums’ but it isn’t true.
What is the point of me writing this? The point is maybe a few people read it and maybe from it we decide that our politicians should prioritize solving these social issues rather than giving tax breaks to the wealthy and investing in weapons. Maybe it reaches a few people who have some creative ideas and it encourages them to share those ideas. I know one thing – it is solvable. The only thing it needs is for us as the people to make our voices heard that just because you didn’t win the embryo lottery it shouldn’t mean you are doom for life, or because you had a hard break in life you should live with the consequences for ever. We will all be better of if we solve these social ills.
I am encouraged by the new generation, who feel that part of their purpose in life is to help others and make the world a better place. That is the reason I got drawn to the tech world. I felt my work in tech was helping the world be a better place. I hope we find creative solutions but in the mean time there are numerous organizations that help the needy and when you are walking and see someone who needs help consider giving what you can. Most important vote for politicians who will make the well being of society a priority and hold them accountable for it.