Words, words, words

A few weeks ago I went to an event with some co-workers; it featured a keynote speaker. I knew nothing about them but read the blurb, in between the mingling bustle beforehand, of how they’d admirably overcome extreme obstacles of poverty and limited education. Now, they try to help break the barriers for others by promoting community involvement and outreach.

During one of the segments, there was a short interview with the person’s mother. The lady had no teeth. It wasn’t her lack of teeth I found shocking but the way it jarred the speaker’s message. Yes, it’s very likely the video may have been for dramatic effect– to show the speaker’s roots, as it were, but even that idea is unsettling. Assuming it has been met, and the image of the mother was staged, why? It negates the progress of the speaker’s determination of improving lives. Why not acknowledge that progress?

This vision of helping others is eclipsed by the image of a very basic and unfulfilled need within their very family. It’s so important to care for those closest to you first. Gracefully without hurting their self-respect.

It undermined the altruistic message. Don’t make a speech, show me.


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