We Turn Our Backs on Africa

Dear President Bush…

Please read the parable of the Good Samaritan. It’s about a man of a different background giving aid to someone who was left for dead. If you’ve already read it, please read it again, because I don’t think you understood it.

Shakespeare’s Sister

The AIDS crisis in Africa has reached such shocking proportions that the lack of attention afforded this urgent tragedy by Western governments, including our own, compels us to question by what moral contortionism we have excused ourselves from intervening. How, exactly, do we justify showing this singular contempt for our African brothers and sisters? Via Pam:
More than 80 million Africans may die from AIDS by 2025, the United Nations said in a report released Friday, and infections could soar to 90 million -- or more than 10 percent of the continent's population -- if more isn't done soon to fight the disease.

More than 25 million African have been infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. UNAIDS estimated that nearly $200 billion is needed to save 16 million people from death and 43 million people from becoming infected, but donors have pledged nowhere near that amount.

In its report, "AIDS in Africa," the U.N. agency examines three potential scenarios for the continent in the next 20 years depending on the international community's response. The three scenarios include a best-case situation, a middle-case and a doomsday scenario. They all warn that the worst of the epidemic's impact is still to come. "There is no single policy prescription that will change the outcome of the epidemic," the report stated. "The death toll will continue to rise no matter what is done." Under the worst-case scenario, experts have plotted current policies and funding over the next two decades.

UNAIDS has reported that life expectancy in nine countries has dropped to below 40 because of the disease. There are already 11 million orphans because of AIDS, while 6,500 people are dying each day. In 2004, 3.1 million Africans were newly infected, the agency said.
"Never again," say our leaders when they visit Auschwitz. “Never again.”

Somber they remember the human toll of a madmen’s excesses, failing to see that a genocide of commission versus one of omission are of a distinction without a difference.

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