Shama posted a comment on my blog recently that spoke about the sadness that invades his very being, each time he encounters a homeless immigrant from another land in the country that he currently lives in. It provoked a Pandora's box of images from all corners of the world, that flooded my mind instantly of lives that have fallen off the edge; because promised dreams have been unfulfilled and legal systems of protection fail to offer solutions that can invest people with dignity and hope.
It is unfortunately human nature to instantly desire to judge and condemn people who have fallen under the radar of legal requirements, or whose circumstance are from compromised legal situations where others have cheated them. The filthy odour of unhygienic living, the stupor of alcohol and substance abuse that becomes the shell of comfort from despair, the criminality that poverty leads them to, the violence that is a result of dehumanised attitudes they encounter, and an inability to locate belief which could provide the potential of a solution: all this and more somehow "allows" us the convenience to ignore them and to treat them as embarrassments to the order of our cities/nations.
Of course we never choose to consider beyond the superficiality of our reactions, nor do we really care to act upon any twinge of conscience that we may have about our indifference to these people. Belonging finally to no land and living in fear of retribution, becomes the blanket that encompasses so many immigrants who have either been misguided in their own dreams of relocation, are politically in need of asylum, or led astray by the greed of others who have preyed upon their frailty and need to better themselves economically.
It angers me to hear the great speeches of conservative ideologues that dissuade government policy-makers from finding ways to facilitate illegal immigrants, and help them to integrate themselves into an official system that could recognise them and aid them to formulate a stable life. It is as though in doing so an entire nations wealth will be held to ransom! The irony is that like good slave traders, countries open up their borders to immigrants whenever they need "workers" to do jobs that they either are incompetent of doing themselves or believe the job to be too lowly for their own citizens!
Shama is one of those kind hearted people who knows that the distrust that he encounters from the homeless immigrants (when he attempts to embrace through acts of kindness), are not because they are without an understanding of his gestures. To them, to open their hearts would be to let the flood gates of their tightly shut away emotions come gushing out to drown them. To them, to do so would mean that they would be destroyed in that luxury to feel again. To them, it is a wiser option not to hope. For they understand the limitations of acts of kindness and know that they would become unwelcome if they reached out for more or communicated their desires. The wisdom that governs such people is often lost on us, because we incapable of contextualising the truth of a situation.
The world needs hundreds and thousands and billion more Shamas. Each kind gesture of a thousand and more individuals would then string together and make a substantial offering of belief that could then alleviate, and save. To pull a person out of trouble we must know that we cannot let go of the hand that believes we are their saviour. Thank you Shama for reminding us of many things we look away from each day. Under the grime and dirt of the abandoned, is a face that is like yours and mine. Why do we forget this and walk away.