[Avodah] Starving children juxtaposed with a picture of the first Beracha of Bentching
T613K at aol.com
T613K at aol.com
Sat Mar 9 23:45:42 PST 2013
From: Marty Bluke <marty.bluke at gmail.com>
Subject: Starving children juxtaposed with a picture of the first Beracha
was shared around Facebook last week, juxtaposing the first beracha of
Bentching (which states that Hashem "gives food to all flesh, for His
kindness is everlasting") with starving children somewhere in Africa. How
do we deal with the obvious contradiction? Similarly how do we explain what
we say in Ashrei every day "poseach es yadecha umasbea lol chai ratzon" in
the face of starvation?
There is more than enough food in the world to feed every hungry child, and
there is also knowledge in the world of how to grow crops even in arid
places under adverse circumstances (the Israelis are masters at this). So
Hashem has provided both the food and the human intelligence to produce more
The reason children are starving in Africa is that human beings, using
their own bechirah, have deliberately created the conditions in which children
starve. There are evil economic arrangements, like totalitarian
Communism, which result in entire countries, like North Korea and Mugabe's Zimbabwe
(or the old USSR under Stalin), starving for decades. Similarly,
socialism, with its attendant political corruption and massive inefficiencies,
causes mass hunger in many countries.
Then there are political and military realities, primarily wars, civil
wars, guerilla wars, terrorism -- warfare being the second most common
producer of starving children.
Sometimes adverse weather causes local food shortages, and when western
countries step in and try to deliver food, local corrupt governments or local
gangs either steal the food or for political reasons, prevent it from being
But in every case, it is evil human actions that prevent food from reaching
starving children. Hashem has provided enough food to feed everyone.
My daughter's professor of Environmental Science told the class that there
are too many people in the world -- the current world population is
unsustainable -- and that plagues, droughts, tsunamis, earthquakes and hurricanes
are Mother Nature's way of bringing the world population into sustainable
balance, and humans should not take steps to thwart Nature. According to
this professor, vaccinations, antibiotics, food aid in drought-stricken
areas, and pretty much all efforts to ameliorate human suffering, are Bad for
the Planet. So as you can see, human evil is everywhere, even in the
seemingly benevolent form of a simple professor in a Florida college. Professors
may be the most evil people of all, because they use their G-d-given
brains and power of speech to justify and rationalize evil. I conclude that
most human suffering is caused by the evil that lurks in the heart of man.
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