Nov 24 2011

Thanksgiving Is For Giving Thanks

Is there a reason to say thank you this year? Thanks for what, you may ask. If we look at the economy, unemployment is at an all time high. Lots of Americans in every state are out of work. American soldiers, away from their families, are stationed all over this globe protecting life and the spirit of freedom. We are in the midst of an election campaign and our President and congressional electorate can’t work together to come up with a jobs producing agreement or budget reduction framework. All over the world, we are seeing a disenfranchised public push to oust an aging autocracy. Europe, facing huge debt and unemployment is on the verge of a grand recession. From catastrophic weather events to unexpected land shifts, to territorial fights, people all over this world are in a state of need. World famine (925 million people: WFP) and poverty are at an all time high. Internally, despite our wide spread food insecurity and rising hunger (50 million people), the population in the United States is getting fatter. Statistics from 2008 revealed that there will be a huge surge in obesity and diabetes by 2030. Now, current research (Northwestern University-Feinberg School of Medicine, presented at the AHA Meetings in Orlando, Florida November 16, 2011) reveals that by the year 2020, ten years earlier than previously expected, the majority of American adults will ...

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Mar 12 2011

March 4 Hunger: Graehm Gray

I Just got back from the March 4 Hunger which took place on a beautifully cool morning on the Broad-walk in Hollywood, Florida. Over 400 runners, walkers and joggers took part in this great event which raises money for Feeding South Florida. People from all over the country including vacationers, residents, boot camp workoutsters , and kids ran walked and jogged the 5K (3.1 mile) course in temperatures starting in the fifties and ending in the  60’s. With the ocean breezes, salt air and sunshine, the conditions couldn’t have been better! Feeding South Florida is an amazing not-for-profit organization that is devoted to “empowering and assisting people in need and improving their lives”. They provide food and other grocery products to the hungry and educate the community to fight hunger and poverty. With one in six adults and one in four kids in the United States alone in the hunger column daily this organization has its work cut out for it.  The poverty numbers have increased over the past few years with this current economic slow down.  Almost 60 million Americans are at the poverty level. There are over 21 million kids (children 18 and under) at the poverty level. In Florida alone, there are over 1 million children( 18 and under) and 2 million adults (age 19 and older) in the poverty classification. In 2009/2010, Feeding South Florida provided over 24 ...

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Jan 18 2010

Graehm Gray-Total Devastation: The January 2010 Earthquake of Haiti

By now you have heard about the Magnitude 7.0 earthquake that struck the island of Haiti on January 12, 2010 at 8:21pm. The epicenter was approximately 15 miles west southwest of the capital Port-Au-Prince. My friends, the impoverished nation of Haiti, with 80 % of the population already in poverty, did not need this new and overwhelming burden. Almost every building in the town and surrounding villages has either collapsed or has sustained major structural damage. There are reports coming in that well over 100,000 people have died. Three million people may be affected by this quake.  Many thousands may be trapped underneath hundreds of pounds of concrete building materials. It is total devastation! Its chaos! The presidential palace, once a major landmark in the capital city, has been heavily damaged. The National Assembly building, the National Cathedral, the prison, and almost all hospitals have been either damaged or destroyed. Water and electricity are not functioning and the city’s infrastructure is gone. It is very difficult to look at the continuous stream of video and pictures. Misery and suffering, homelessness, hunger and fear; people walking around without hope, animals wandering free, people trying to find their lost ones, families waiting for any sign that their child, sister or brother is alive. And to top all things off, the evil that follows disaster- the looting, stealing and thugs that find ...

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Nov 10 2009

Graehm Gray-Giving Thanks!

I sat down to write my thoughts on what this year’s Thanksgiving 2009 means to me and I realized that the holiday has been lost in translation. I am trying to look at the big picture for a moment. I listen to the morning and nightly news and I just about want to check myself into a self help center-can you all say depressing! What are we giving thanks for? Unemployment is at an all time high-over ten percent. That means not since the period from September of 1982 through June 1983, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, have more American’s been out of work. Now according to our government, the “recession” is over. What? Yea, I know, before everything turns around, it’s supposed to get a lot worse. Well, we are at “it’s a lot worse” and I’m no rocket scientist, but according to many expert economists, “we haven’t seen anything yet.” Does that mean 11 percent unemployment? Now, tell me again why we are giving thanks? Okay, maybe we are heading for a national health plan to cover the millions of Americans that have no insurance. And maybe we will see the end to insurance companies denying insurance based on “pre-existing” illness, and just maybe we will start to see affordable health coverage. That’s in the plus column. Our troops overseas engaged in two fronts -back to ...

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