Poverty and the white bands

I wear white bands when I preach, but beginning today scads of people will be wearing white bands — white wristbands mostly, but get what you can — to direct attention to global poverty, HIV disease, and what can be done to mitigate both.

Outside the US, this campaign goes by the name “Make Poverty History” while in the US, it is known as the ONE Campaign. Minus points for this distinction, even though the “one” stands in part — and you have to hunt for this — for one percent of the US federal budget to the stated goals: “We believe that allocating an additional ONE percent of the U.S. budget toward providing basic needs like health, education, clean water and food, would transform the futures and hopes of an entire generation of the poorest countries.” (Link)

Seems fair to me; indeed, a bargain if the reduction in human suffering is even an nth of what’s hoped for. With less suffering there’s less competition for limited resources, and so less opportunity for armed conflict. Plus it is the right thing to do. Sign me up. And follow the ONE link to the right on the main page.

Also, it is based on such a broad coalition — you hear about the celebrity bit, where Bono and Pat Robertson both support it — of organizational partners that I implicity trust their effort.

A link from a blog is just about the least one can do, and I’m sorry to say that apart from Philocrites and me, no other Unitarian Universalists I’ve seen have. So I’m shaming you into doing it; you may defend yourself in the comments.

I’m a little sad that such a clear choice hasn’t made its way through the otherwise contientious agencies of the UUA. There’s nothing at UUA.org about the campaign which suggests abstainance. I won’t speculate on why there’s no UUA attention to this, but I think it is a mistake or unfortunate oversight.

By Scott Wells

Scott Wells, 46, is a Universalist Christian minister doing Universalist theology and church administration hacks in Washington, D.C.


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