The Shutdown Crisis, Elysium, & Others
“Everybody wants to ask me lately about my predictions for the future,” the director says, “No, no, no. This isn’t science fiction. This is today. This is now.” –Neill Blomkamp, Director of Elysium
As a Sci-Fi enthusiast, I was excited about seeing Elysium back in July. The movie envisions a future world of super rich folks “living large” on a man-made space station, while the rest of the world lives on a destroyed earth in the depressing decade of 2150.
Elysium’s director, Neill Blomkamp, clearly wanted the movie to be a social commentary on our world in 2013, as the quote above highlights. While growing up in Africa, Neill likely experienced the shocking differences in medical treatment around the globe.
Indeed, in some ways we live in an “Elysium world” today. Privileged people living in the US, Western Europe and “developed” Asia have at least some level of access to quality care, while the rest of the world still struggles. Daily, my wife sees the chasm in treatment quality around the world as she runs a Ronald McDonald House in Germany. Families from Eastern Europe, N. Africa and the Middle East routinely spend everything they have just to get their children into Leukemia/Cancer treatment in W. Europe.
In this context, it is admittedly frustrating to watch the US Govt. hit shut-down mode tonight over Obamacare–especially as the main thrust of the law is to ensure that uninsured/vulnerable people gain access to quality health care.
So, with health care (or lack of it) on my mind, I have two gentle requests for your support tonight:
i) Andry: Some of you might be following our journey to raise money for Andry–an orphan with kidney failure in one of Africa’s poorest countries (Madagascar). We’ve managed to raise about $20,000 this year and dialysis machines have been purchased. Despite access to dialysis machines, the money is still not enough to pay the large drug manufacturers–Novartis & Roche–for access to medication this year. If anyone knows an influencer in either company who may be able to give us a break on the cost of meds, please let me know. Or, you can donate to Andry here. If you aren’t in a position to donate right now, please like his page here.
ii) Leah: Leah is a young woman who was diagnosed with leukemia, but has battled back valiantly. Mitch Joel is making a strong plea for donations to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada over on Six Pixels of Separation. My wife deals with the impact of Leukemia every day and we’ve seen beautiful children pass away over the last couple of years–what a terrible disease! You can read about the action Mitch is supporting here. Please consider giving to this cause as well.
Thank you so much for your help and support.