Thursday, August 30, 2012

Go Figure

It has been a good week.
I have had the best time reading books and writing and most of all listening to music.
In this time I have also come to learn that I need to listen more and keep my thoughts where they belong. It is also some kind of thrill to listen to news in a foreign language as I read some of my favorite books.

But, something caught my attention yesterday. The Street Lawyer by John Grisham. I have read most of his books that were turned into movies (The Pelican Brief, The Chamber, Runaway Jury) but my all time favorite is The RainMaker! So, this book "The Street Lawyer" follows the life of a top shot Lawyer, Michael, who earns thousands but this homeless guys holds them captive and ends up getting shot-and Michael is compelled to look at how greedy he's gotten and where that places him. He realizes the firm he works for was responsible for evicting some homeless people and he wants to change that. In fact he wants to practice law for the justice and fairness to all people and not for the money-so he leaves his firm-is divorced by his wife and resorts to about thirty thousand per annum. In my world I would ask, 'are you stupid?' But then that's the world that am brought up in, but a huge part of me was like 'quit real fast, do something good.'

So, it got me asking- how many of Kenyans do pay taxes?

How much of that tax goes to the street children?

How much of the tithes we pay in churches goes to the poor and the homeless?

And, my younger sister just asked me- 'are there homeless shelters in Kenya?'  My answer to the first three is I have no clue. To the last one- there are no homeless shelters, because like I was told by a civil servant, "people are looking for handouts and the moment there is a steady supply of that, they get lazy, if you open a homeless shelter, you'll start feeding even a man who can serve as a boda boda peddler-to feed his own, and if you haven't known it sometimes charity itself takes away people's pride and earning their own living and you breed beggars!"

I swallowed my coffee just as first to stop myself from choking. I always love getting a reality check from my Sister because when she does it I call it tough love so it doesn't hurt as much, but a stranger? I almost lost my marbles (that's if I ain't psycho already)

I know it's the age of positive Psychology and everybody is all about self awareness and how to better themselves. I also know that in the past year alone most billionaires have donated to charities and held fundraisers for organizations that they ignored-because they have realized that everyone is human and no one deserves to be treated less because of their situation and that brings me back to what I was trying to say in the first few lines.

It has been a good week. I have life, family,entertainment and a sense of security that most people do not.

I am not Michael, but I know one thing- that if there's someone who needs help and I can offer it-I will do so. I also know that even those who do not ask for help need it.