Thursday, April 04, 2013

Is the sky falling?

Watching the evening news these days is a grim experience: a petty dictator in North Korea is stamping his foot and threatening nuclear attack; people die daily by the dozens in the Middle East; severe weather problems beset the entire globe; famine in Africa makes us weep for those who die of malnutrition; here at home, a partisan Congress is stalled on budget, gun control, the right to marry--major issues for many of us. The sequester has taken much-needed jobs from people and essential aid from the medically underserved and poverty stricken. It occurs to me as I worry that our grandparents and their parents probably thought the world was falling apart a hundred years ago--and it didn't so far.
Most of us feel powerless in the face of the enormity of the world's problems. I know I do. I have great admitation for people like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet, who do enormous charitable work throughout the world. I have chosen a few causes to support in my own small way--that means a small check occasionally.
Each of us has to choose what we can do, especially with limited resources. I've chosen to help lost or stray dogs and those about to be euthanized by posting about them on Facebook and sharing posts from others. It's a discouraging effort without much feedback, but there is a network of people who do this, many more active than I am. I do know of a few dogs who have happy homes because of my effort. If I could, I would bring so many of them home, but Sophie and I are settled in a comfortable routine--I'm afraid she shines as the only dog.
One friend asked why I devote so much time and effort to animals when there are so many hungry and homeless children. My answer is twofold: beyond food drives at my church or the food bank, I can do little to dent the problems of hungry children, either here at home or throughout the world, but I can make a difference for dogs. And we humans are responsible for those animals--we have bred them, let them reproduce, and they too have feelings and fears. Too many of us have been irresponsible pet owners. Maybe I can make a tiny bit of amends.


LD Masterson said...

I have a t-shirt you would like. It reads:

My Favorite Breed of Dog is RESCUE.

Judy Alter said...

I would like that. I'm almost a big embarrased that my current dog is a carefully bred kennel dog and not a rescue. But I love her. Too late to look back now.