But, apparently, the issue that really drives some people nuts is, "which children should we adopt?"
First, allow me a disclaimer:
My story is only my story. I am not a paid spokesman for Latin American adoptions nor am I someone who has the slightest idea what anyone else should do. My wife and I feel that we are on a Blues Brothers-like "Mission from God". So, if you don't believe in God, or don't think God puts people on specific missions, then there is a good chance that you think I am nuts anyway. That is fine. I really hope everyone would consider helping a child or children in someway in life - Big Brothers/Big Sisters, mentoring, being nice to your neighbors, or whatever. And if you feel extra blessed and fortunate to have a wonderful situation in life, then consider paying it forward and allowing a kiddo who has no chance on this planet most likely to join you in your blessed suburban existence.
Now, back to the original question that i have received no fewer than a dozen times since I announced this plan 12 days ago on the air. Why are we not adopting a needy child from Texas? Why would we overlook the needs of people within a few miles to help a child a few thousand miles away?
This is a real email I received last night:
Y'all could not adopt an American child? Or is that not the chic thing to do?
Thousands of kids in this country need a good home & you publicize how cool it is to adopt a kid from somewhere else. SMH.
Don't get me wrong, I'm sure your new kid will have a fantastic home, it's just sad there's a kid in this country that loses because of it.
I won't print the dude's name because that wouldn't be pleasant, but I was taken a bit off guard by this guy to have the huevos to ask me that. To infer that there is some level of publicity seeking from this is an easy way to draw me offside. However, I will concede that I likely goofed on Angelina Jolie or Madonna for a similar international adoption when I was a bit less informed.
Upon receiving his email, I wanted to fire off a terse response, but also decided against that. Instead, I shared the event with my twitter followers:
@Sportssturm: Just got a "hey,you should adopt American" email. Response: the God I believe in doesn't recognize borders, mister. #BonoInspiredResponses.
I really believe that. I think the idea of borders is something that God allows us to do as we draw up our maps and fight our wars, but I also believe in his eyes that humans are humans. Money, ethnicity, social background, education, or whatever else you want to throw in doesn't change his perception of us.
Therefore, in my opinion (which could be wrong, but it is mine), God isn't worried about us "buying American". He has precious souls all over the world that need our help. Multiple sources indicate that there are over 140 million orphans in the world today. Let's say that number is inflated. Let's say there are only 140,000 orphans in the world. Can you imagine the life of an orphan? The lack of options and a future? I don't mean to get to heavy here, but 140 million and someone is worried about which one is brought hope and change?
I am not in Honduras buying a car. I don't think the economy depends on my keeping American jobs alive by spending inside our man-made borders.
But, why Honduras? Well, I really don't know. Our first idea was Mexico. Then Guatemala. And finally, Honduras. The road here was crazy and unpredictable, but we arrived in 2009 at the idea that we were supposed to help a child here. It was faith. It was a feeling. I can't really explain it fully. It just seemed like the thing we were asked to do. And once we (my wife and I) felt that way, we just walked to the light.
But, since it wasn't 1 dude, but over a dozen, I do want to challenge those who feel that way to watch 2 documentaries for me and ask if the need domestically is similar. One can be seen here and it is called Recycled Life. It is the story of the children who literally live in a junkyard in Guatemala City. The other is called Which Way Home and can be seen on Netflix and is the story of children who hop trains to try to get to the USA through Mexico.
Both show you the poverty and hopelessness of many in Central America. Is it more sad than Africa or Russia or China or anywhere else in the world? Who knows? Who cares? It is bad. It is impossible for a child to figure things out without parents. Heck, it is tough enough with parents, but at least you generally get a good meal once in a while.
If you watch that junkyard video (less than 40 minutes) and can then tell me with a straight face that the problems in Dallas are similar or more pressing, then I will happily apologize to you and anyone else who wishes for an apology for not "supporting my country" in this venture. But, I fully expect that you will admit you had no idea how bad it is here for children.
Look, I am not trying to compare shades of bad. Bad is bad. And many children inside our borders need help, too. But, one guy said we should take care of our own. My response would then be, "so, should we let these countries take care of their own?" Because I have news for you. They cannot run elections, let alone solve their orphan problems. They have kids living in junkyards, so I don't think they have it handled. We might want to step in.
God doesn't cheer for a certain country in the Olympics. He asked us to take care of orphans and widows (James 1:27) and I don't believe he had specific geographic guidelines. Yes, I am sure that God wants the children in Iraq and Afghanistan helped, too.
This is not a foreign policy where we should stay out of other country's business. These are innocent children. They need help. All over the world. 140 million. 140,000,000.
I don't think it is time to get picky about which ones are being helped.
PS - I will get back to football soon.