December 8, 2011 at 3:10 PM

Baby, It’s Cold Outside

"Look at the children and if you can, lend a hand to address some real basic issues"

By Mary MacIntyre

Poetically Hungry

Mary MacIntyre writes incessantly, is an avid photographer, and a classic health food nut.

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Whooping cough is up dramatically this year, according to news reports.  They suspect unvaccinated children are to blame.  Blame the children. I'd like more facts please. I am thinking about researching an article about these statistics, while I am driving to do some work, and am enjoying watching the children getting home from school. The day is sunny, cold, and the mountains are gorgeous.

The first child is tiny, perhaps aged six. He is running down the street. Good warm jacket, but the hood has blown away from his head. Temperature is 18 degrees F. He must have run about 3/4 of a mile. But he is almost home.  At the next bus stop, I see older boys get off the school bus in white tee shirts. I feel startled.

I drive on. When I see a thin girl with no coat, and her little sister running trying to catch up, carrying her lilac-colored winter jacket and her lunchbox, reality hits me. Some of these kids do not have coats, mittens, sweaters, hats or scarves. They are cold. They may be hungry. They are running. They are real and many live here in Santa Fe. I want to stop them. I want to know, where are their mothers?  I want to scream.

Children are getting sick because they are hungry or do not get good nutrition.  Because they are cold. Will their house be warm? Possibly not. All the vaccinations in the world won't help their immune systems fight bugs. In fact, immunizations depress healthy immune function. Poverty lashes out at their bodies. Hunger aches in their bones. Cold scrapes their skin raw.

Multiply these scenes throughout New Mexico, where communities often have much greater density of poverty.  Reality check New Mexico. Whooping cough is up this year. Look at the children and if you can, lend a hand to address some real basic issues.

Post note:  Every dollar donated to the Food Depot can create four meals.  Support your church-sponsored organizations as well. Bless you and thank you.

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