where nothing ever grows

When I started blogging, I posted more general musings than update-style. Then I started having kids and ... I didn't really muse any more. Plus, I have tons of things to post about the kids. So my blogging style changed. You could say this post is going back to my roots.

I recently watched a documentary called Genetic Roulette. (While it's very eye-opening and important information, and I think you should watch it, that's not really what this post is about.) One of the experts they interview makes a statement about the biotech industry claiming that there isn't enough food to feed everyone in the world and that their genetically engineered food will solve world hunger. But, that isn't really true, says this expert. There is more than enough food in the world. People are starving because they can't afford to buy food.

This reminded me of the song Do They Know It's Christmas. While I recognize that this song has done some good in the world as far as fundraising and raising awareness about world hunger, I have a lot of problems with the lyrics because they perpetuate the myth about the reason people have to go without food.

While there are regional food shortages sometimes, and the government and World Food Program import food from other countries, most of the time, people who go without food are doing so not because there is no food but because they have no money to buy food.

The lyrics:

1) There won't be snow in Africa this Christmastime. Ok. There are a lot of places where it doesn't snow at Christmas. Like Texas (most of the time) or Australia. This point is moot. Not only that, it isn't even true. There are snow-capped mountains in Africa, and there is snow on them at Christmas.

2) The greatest gift they'll get this year is life. Honestly, is there any greater gift? Is there really going to be something in your stocking or under your tree on Christmas morning that makes you say, "Wow. I no longer need nor want to live because I have now received The Ultimate Gift That's Better Than Life Itself?"

3) Where nothing ever grows. Maybe true in desert regions, but all of Africa isn't a desert. Lots of stuff grows in Africa.

4) No rain or rivers flow. Just not true at all. There are rainy seasons. There are floods. There are many rivers.

5) Do they know it's Christmastime at all. I can't speak for all of Africa, but here, Christmas is a religious holiday celebrated by Christians. Santa Claus, elves, and Rudolph are not part of the celebration because they are part of American cultural Christmas, not religious Christmas. So maybe it doesn't look like Christmas from our cultural perspective, but they do celebrate Christmas.

But anyway. My point is: I hate the lyrics of this song.


  1. Hmmm, I always liked your musings. Glad to see them coming back. How have your feelings changed about valentine's day? That was always my favorite rant.

  2. I'll make a note to do a Valentine's post next year. :)


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