On Thanksgiving, I woke up at 5:00 am and couldn’t get back to sleep. Fortunately, there’s plenty to do on Thanksgiving, starting with baking pie! I have a deep-dish berry pie I love to make, but don’t have the time to bake as often as I’d like. I had the time on Thursday morning! So I got baking, and while I did, I listened to NPR.

They played a story about the war in Yemen, something I haven’t kept close track of. But this story said that since the war started, 85,000 — let me repeat that, EIGHTY-FIVE THOUSAND — infants and children under the age of five have starved to death because of the conflict. Let me reiterate, because this is stunning.

85,000 infants and children.
To death.
Because of this war.

Yemen’s Civil War Pushes The Country To The Brink Of Famine

Here I am, making a zillion-calorie pie, with plans to make dinner rolls and buttery, sour-creamy mashed potatoes later, and every intention of enjoying the biggest, most luxurious meal of my year… and infants and children are starving to death. At that exact moment. Probably at this exact moment, too.

Whatever you think of the war in Yemen, the role of Saudi Arabia and the United States in that conflict, Middle East politics in general, all that stuff: Set that aside for a moment. Imagine watching your son or daughter slowly starve to death, while you couldn’t do a thing about it, because of something you cannot control, through no fault of your own.

This isn’t a political issue. This is a humanitarian crisis. We’re still the wealthiest, most powerful country in the world. We have the power to do something — a lot of somethings — about this. Do we have any conscience left? Do we only care about news-bingeing on the latest Trump scandal? Can we take off our political blinders for a moment and look around at the rest of the world, maybe summon enough empathy to imagine our own children starving to death?

We had Thanksgiving dinner, and I honestly felt more thankful than usual. But I also felt deeply disturbed. It seems so wrong for us to have so much, so much that we’ll probably end up throwing away a lot of this pie because we can’t even finish it before it’s no good… when there are people so incredibly desperate for anything.

We’ve decided as a family to make a real, substantial donation to one of the charities working directly to help in Yemen. Benji is donating his allowance. This isn’t about liberal or conservative; it’s about peoples’ lives. 

We found a good list on Charity Navigator. Feel free to join us.

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what’s coming to you in this kingdom. It’s been ready for you since the world’s foundation. And here’s why:

I was hungry and you fed me,
I was thirsty and you gave me a drink,
I was homeless and you gave me a room,
I was shivering and you gave me clothes,
I was sick and you stopped to visit,
I was in prison and you came to me. 

“Then those ‘sheep’ are going to say, ‘Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you a drink? And when did we ever see you sick or in prison and come to you?’ Then the King will say, ‘I’m telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me—you did it to me.’

Matthew 25:34-40

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