After several letters to the editor criticizing the United States government leadership, policies and the American people, it is time to take a broader look at America. In common with all other people in the world, Americans are not perfect. Like all the others, we make mistakes.
Let's balance the picture by considering some of the good work we are doing to improve the lives of less fortunate populations in other countries. In many ways, American individuals, charitable organizations and lobbying organizations such as Bread for the World, are providing food, health care and other benefits to people of foreign countries who do not presently have the resources to help themselves.
Generous Americans such as Bill Gates and Warren Buffett have provided many billions of dollars in foreign aid. Many thousands of other individuals have contributed other funds and services for such purposes. Many American foundations have contributed such programs. Bread for the World recently supported a Congressional bill to increase foreign poverty focused development assistance by $1 billion. President Bush has requested an additional two billion for such assistance.
Congress, in 2003, established the Millenium Challenge Account, which assists developing countries committed to good government and improving the lives of their people. An advantage of furnishing such resources through organizations such as Bread for the World is that they monitor programs so that resources are not wasted by distribution through corrupt government employees.
Various groups of doctors have contributed their services to treat people in such countries who could not afford medical care. In disaster relief, many thousands of lives have been saved by the outstanding work of the American Red Cross.
The goal of these programs is to create opportunities for people that improve their lives by allowing them to become self-supporting. This is important for America and the people of Western Europe also. The earth has finite resources and Americans are doing well to support their present population adequately. The more developed countries are currently being flooded with immigrants for economic reasons. These people would not feel the need to migrate if they could live reasonably well in their native lands.
Jim Winter, Payson