Here goes a first personal blog. I will just dive right in.
Today I drove to the Subway in the North Shore. Upon pulling into a parking space I noticed passersby staring toward an adjacent sidewalk. I killed my engine and rolled down my window, listening.
I heard a woman screaming angrily so I stepped out of my car to take a look.
She was about my age with long reddish brown hair. Flapping her arms, yelling, crying, pacing. High on drugs. Her face was drawn into a tight grimace. Her attention was on something invisible.
There was that rush inside of me one gets when they are witnessing a ‘spectacle’. And then I was consumed with overwhelming despair and sadness.
This woman could be me. She could be a sister or a daughter or a mother or all 3.
No one knew what to do. I felt helpless. Do I call bylaw? An ambulance? What do I do? How do I help?
I watched,feeling sick,as the public looked on and got into their cars and drove away.
Eventually a cop car rolled in and parked nearby but no one got out.
I wanted her to be picked up and taken to a safe detox facility for 6 months and given a decent chance. I wanted to offer her food and water. I wanted her to not be in this condition. I wanted to know who I was supposed to phone and what I was supposed to do.
One loud, persistent thought kept coming addressed to myself. ‘Be better. Be a better human. No matter what you are doing be better. Because you have been given so much.’
Our responsibility is to take our gifts and blessings and be better humans because we can. And in bettering ourselves we better our families and communities. So, in the end, we can work together to lift those up who have fallen.
We are like pebbles hitting water. We radiate. It seems like a long route but it is the only way to come to solutions and raise the health of our community as a whole.
It starts with us individually.
This situation is age old. Kings and serfs. Robin Hood. People throughout history have tried to address this disparity between the very rich and the very poor.
Is it crazy to think we can pull everyone together and solve these kinds of problems?
I cannot live on this earth and not try. I cannot stop caring. And I know a whole lot of amazing people feel the same way.
This is not acceptable. Walking past ‘tweekers’ and homeless people sleeping on concrete steps.
We need to do better. As individuals and as a community.