Of Fish and Justice

I apologize in advance for the use of non-inclusive language.

“Give a man a fish, feed him for a day.  Teach a man to fish, and  you feed him for his life.”

Well, maybe.  What if you teach fishing and then deny the use of your pond?   What if you teach a person a skill and then refuse them the opportunity to use that skill to sustain life because they were once in prison, or are an immigrant, or have physical disabilities, or are the ‘wrong’ gender?

Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states

  • (1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.
  • (2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.

Further – Article 11 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights states that

1. The States Parties to the present Covenant recognize the right of everyone to an adequate standard of living for himself and his family, including adequate food, clothing and housing, and to the continuous improvement of living conditions. The States Parties will take appropriate steps to ensure the realization of this right, recognizing to this effect the essential importance of international co-operation based on free consent.

2. The States Parties to the present Covenant, recognizing the fundamental right of everyone to be free from hunger, shall take, individually and through international co-operation, the measures, including specific programmes, which are needed:

  • (a) To improve methods of production, conservation and distribution of food by making full use of technical and scientific knowledge, by disseminating knowledge of the principles of nutrition and by developing or reforming agrarian systems in such a way as to achieve the most efficient development and utilization of natural resources;
  • (b) Taking into account the problems of both food-importing and food-exporting countries, to ensure an equitable distribution of world food supplies in relation to need.

156 countries are signatories to the latter, Canada being one.   It saddens me that hunger is still a reality for 925 million people, that is one in seven people.  19% of that number live in developed countries!

Support the Canadian Food Grains Bank http://www.foodgrainsbank.ca/  They do amazing work through micro loans, education on nutrition, improving food security, and provide food assistance to people with immediate needs.  Also they attempt to influence public policies with the goal of ending hunger.  Often your contribution can be matched up to four times by the Canadian government and other organizations.  It is a way you, as an individual, can give someone a fish, teach someone to fish, and ensure access to fish!

1 John 3:17   How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help?

Ezekiel 18:5,7-9  5 If a man is righteous and does what is lawful and right — 7 does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, commits no robbery, gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment,  8 does not take advance or accrued interest, withholds his hand from iniquity, executes true justice between contending parties,  9 follows my statutes, and is careful to observe my ordinances, acting faithfully — such a one is righteous; he shall surely live, says the Lord GOD.

Statistics on world hunger obtained from http://www.worldhunger.org/articles/Learn/world%20hunger%20facts%202002.htm

(I don’t know where I came across the images, I believe them to be tattoo designs.  If you know or if it is yours, please let me know so I can properly attribute ownership.  Thank you.)


2 comments on “Of Fish and Justice

  1. blogturtle says:

    as a recreational fisherman, i love that quote.
    true, it is sad that hunger still plagues the world.

    thoughtful post!

    • antarabesque says:

      Some of my favourite memories are fishing with my dad. How he had the patience to operate the boat, fish and keep the weeds off of four children’s hooks still amazes me. Thanks for checking out my blog.

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