Acorns and the Marginalized

My dog loves eating acorns. But he also loves eating sticks and poop, so I’ve never given it much concern.

Nor should I. Acorns are the stuff of life! For many centuries they have been a staple in Native-American diets, and with proper preparation, they can be a tasty and nutritional source of protein.

Even still, none of us would want to live solely on acorns. But that is the case in North Korea right now, where food has been scarce for decades. In the mid-1990s, North Korea experienced a horrible famine that wiped out millions of people and caused bone damage and underdevelopment in an entire generation.

Now, the North Korean agricultural ministry has announced that, even though there is already no food, it will get even worse in 2010.

According to one interview with the organization Open Doors, “it’s normal to see children lying dead on the street” in North Korea’s Hwangae Province. As the campaign for Village of Hope in Morocco continues, I can’t help but remember that each Korean child lying dead in the street has parents who have had to watch her starve and die, or have been imprisoned in a labor camp by the state, knowing that it means their little one will not survive.

Kim Jong-Il has tried to “stimulate the economy” by forcing almost all of his citizens to work for the state, but such work is very difficult on a people who have only acorns to survive.

Can it be any surprise that the citizens of this country are trying to flee? They have nothing to lose, and so they have become fugitives, refugees, widows carrying starving children. And they need a place to go.

Next time you see acorns, consider gathering them for dinner and preparing them correctly so that they won’t be too bitter. Then feed only that to yourself and your family for a few months, even the infants, and you will know a North Korean diet.

If, like me, you are not willing to do that, we should remember that most people would choose not to as well. But not all of us can.

As citizens who love to praise liberty, let’s offer it to the people who need it most. Vote for LiNK’s safe house for North Korean refugees. Use every e-mail address you have, and tell your friends. Let your campus know, and especially any Korean groups. South Koreans often have the biggest heart for saving their northern neighbors.

Let’s get LiNK their well-deserved grant of $250,000, and do everything in our power to help the people of North Korea who arrive here desperate and disturbed, in need of a hope and a future.

Next Week:

I will be out of town working on a writing project for the next week. I will not have internet access, and will not be updating the blog. But I will be sending a daily reminder (via the husband!) to vote for LiNK and to tell others. If you find that obnoxious, don’t blame me – blame Kim Jong-Il.

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