By now almost everyone has learned of the death of Whitney Houston.
Wikipedia has the following to say about her: “Whitney Elizabeth Houston (August 9, 1963 – February 11, 2012) was an American recording artist, actress, producer, and model. In 2009, the Guinness World Records cited her as the most-awarded female act of all time. Her awards include two Emmy Awards, six Grammy Awards, 30 Billboard Music Awards, and 22 American Music Awards, among a total of 415 career awards in her lifetime. Houston was also one of the world’s best-selling music artists, having sold over 170 million albums, singles and videos worldwide. Houston began singing with her New Jersey church’s junior gospel choir at age 11. After she began performing alongside her mother in night clubs in the New York City area, she was discovered by Arista Records label head Clive Davis. Houston released seven studio albums and three movie soundtrack albums, all of which have diamond, multi-platinum, platinum or gold certification.”
It is fair to say that she was a very talented and successful person in our world. And yet, those around her allowed her to engage in behavior that was obvious, illegal, and self-destructive. I never want to be one to speak ill of folks, but there is a paradox here that is troubling me.
The national media has presented article after article, news story after news story about what a wonderful person she was, what a talented person she was, what a tragedy it is that she is now dead — the governor of NJ even lowered the flag to half staff in her honor.
And here is my problem. She was all of those things — and yet she chose to waste those gifts and opportunities on self-destructive behaviors. And we still HONOR her.
All the while, every day, in every country around the world, men, women, and children are killed, assaulted, abused, and mistreated — not by choice or of their own design. Every 3 seconds of every day, of every week, of every year — someone dies from hunger related issues. Every 6 seconds of every day, of every week, of every year that person is a child.
And they do not choose to be hungry or suffer from health issues due to hunger. And the media remains essentially silent about this. The sad, unfortunate, and truly heartbreaking part of this is not only is it not-self inflicted — it is preventable! Every day our world produces enough food for every man, woman & child to consume 4.3 pounds.
The problem is not self-destructive behavior, scarcity of resources, or lack of knowledge. It is simply a case of our unwillingness as a species to make the resources available to those in need. It is a supply issue. It is a compassion issue.
How about a little less attention on the self-absorbed, self destructive, self abusing “stars” and more attention on those that suffer through no fault of their own — and how we can stop this trend. We can truly Stop Hunger — NOW if we will choose to do so.
Will you help? Will you invest your time, attention and resources in this cause? Donate today at: Stop Hunger Now.