Every year people wish for things, mostly unobtainable by themselves and often totally selfish. This year I decided to ignore my own wishes and tried to think of things which would ultimately benefit everyone on our fragile planet. Oh, don't be fooled, I'm as selfish as the next person when it comes to wishes, but once you get started thinking about the bigger picture, it really is not that hard to forget what you want in the small corner of your world. So here it is:-
- I wish everyone in the world a crime-free year ahead. Although I am from South Africa and crime is truly a problem in our country, ours is not the only one where people are affected by the results of crime on a daily basis. Take a moment and think about this. Violent crime is not limited to street muggings and robberies from people you don't know. Domestic violence must be one of the most under-reported (both in the media and the police stations) crime in the world. Most abusers are clever and spin a web around their victims, emotionally and physically dis-empowering them to the extent where the victim feels worthless with no self-esteem left. I've seen this happen over and over again while working as Commissioner of the Children Court and even in the criminal courts. We only hear about domestic violence in the media when the victim snaps and fights back - often with more force than people deem necessary. But, this abuse usually continues for years before someone realize there is a problem. So my first wish for this Christmas is that nobody should suffer in the hands of an abuser - whether known or unknown.
- I wish every child in the world a warm bed, abundance of food and most of all - plenty of love for the next year. People able to support themselves and their families tend to look away from a street child begging on the street corner or at the supermarket. They don't want to see the hungry face because it makes them feel guilty. They justify not helping the child by saying there are millions of these children around the world and helping this one unknown child will not make a difference. Just think about this: if one person helps one child every day in each country of the world - how big a difference would we be able to make? How many children would be saved, helped, fed and provided for? So in short my wish for the year ahead: I wish every person on the planet would help one child in some way every single day of the year.
- May the powers that be work together without putting the monetary benefits first, to ensure the future of our planet. The fragility of our planet has been in the news often lately and more and more people start to realize that we cannot keep on abusing the planet as we are doing. Resources are slowly being depleted and the recent funny weather (and this is my opinion) is evidence of more radical changes to come if nothing is done about the effect our habits have on the environment.
I hope everyone has a prosperous New Year and that health and wealth will follow after the 1st of January.