Questions and Chaos

Life in the 21st Century

Elders of the Global Village

Thursday, August 16, 2007

July 18, 2007 an event occurred for the first time in the existence of the human race and the media was incredibly indifferent.

The next day, the headline in the New York Times read: “Pull Out Bid Lost, Democrats Stop Debate on Iraq“; the Toronto Globe and Mail read: “Global Hunt Heightens for [Conrad] Black Assets“; the Edmonton Journal headline read: “Bid for Oilers [hockey team] Jumps $20 Million“. Those were the events deemed most important for public knowledge.

July 18, 2007 marked the first formation of a group of global elders. Modeled on the role of elders in traditional societies they are a group of “trusted, respected, worldly-wise individuals with a proven commitment and record of contributing to solving global problems.” The mandate of the group is to work publicly and privately to address global issues, resolve conflict and support the contribution of established groups working to stop unnecessary human suffering. Members of the group are free from all political, economic and military pressures.

Their only purpose is to ease human suffering in three essential areas:

  1. Offering a catalyst for the peaceful resolution of conflict.
  2. Seeking new approaches to seemingly intractable global issues.
  3. Sharing wisdom: reaching out to the grassroots Elders and to the next generation of leaders. Listening and helping to amplify voices for good all over the world.”

Desmond Tutu, Chair of The Elders, said, “Despite all of the ghastliness that is around, human beings are made for goodness. The ones who ought to be held in high regard are not the ones who are militarily powerful, nor even economically prosperous. The are the ones who have a commitment to try and make the world a better place. We – The Elders – will endeavor to support those people and do our best for humanity.” — wow.

Other members of the group include: Nelson Mandela from South Africa, Graca Machel from Mozambique, Kofi Annan from Ghana, Ela Bhatt from India, Gro Harlem Brundtland from Norway, Jimmy Carter from the United States, Li Zhaoxing from China, Mary Robinson from Ireland and Mohammad Yunus from Bangladesh.

Look at the faces of these people and compare them to those who rant and rage about weapons of mass destruction. Look at the resumes of what these people have already accomplished. These are the people we should look to as role models for ourselves and our children. These are the people whose faces we should see on magazine covers. These are the people whose life stories should become feature articles.

In his opening address Nelson Mandela said, “We are only human through the humanity of other human beings.” Let us choose our role models wisely.

1 Comment »


Comment by Peggy

August 31, 2007 @ 9:10 am

I missed this, but thank you for bringing it to my attention. There is hope for the world, we just need to be aware of all the good people who are working to make positive change.
Thanks Peggy

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