Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Freedom to have One's Childhood (or Life)

I think at times of how others in the world don't have the right or luxury to live "their own lives", in varying circumstances. There are those under fire - or extreme control as has happened recently in both Gaza and Iraq, and others who often can't simply live a "normal" life, as you or I might not even imagine. The right to go to a job and not get shot at in the process is something that most of us take for granted.

Last Friday I was walking, taking my step-son home from school. I made a joke - saying that he had to "suffer" for the next two days, with no school. My words were interrupted by a young Black girl, somewhere between 9-11 years old, who was about to enter a large commercial van near where we were walking. She spoke most earnestly to me about how she would love to have school 7 days a week. I realized, as I heard her words, that she had no "home" for her weekends - or possibly - a painful supervised trip with a family member (such as to a women's prison). She clearly was in some type of "supervised living" for children, most likely taken away from a parent or guardian. For her - the "good times" - were her times in school, where she could play and in many ways - "be normal". For her a weekend meant unpleasantness. It saddened me!

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