Independence day is just a few days away and if you’re a runner, I’m willing to bet that your celebration plans will be preceded by an early morning run. As runners, I know how grateful we all are to have the freedom to run wherever and whenever we want to, and while Independence Day is certainly not about “running,” it encompasses all of those things that we desire to do without having any type of restraints placed upon us.
For the most part, I believe that we do enjoy the benefits of living in an independent nation. Others might argue however that we are not free at all, and that our independence is a sham, hidden behind what is really a dictatorial society which forces us to adhere to certain rules and regulations. But while there may be some truth to that, I don’t think we are so enslaved by such rules that we feel extremely oppressed and violated. On the contrary, I believe that we ought to feel blessed that we live in actual homes, buy food and clothes and cars for ourselves, go on vacations, and do things that we love to do – in our case, run.
And that brings me to the point that I really want to discuss in this post. Yesterday, I listened to a few words presented by Buddy Rathmell, a representative and strong advocate for StopSlavery.org. Buddy shared about the work that he and his family are doing in Thailand and Cambodia, work which involves various projects with a common objective in mind: to end the evil practice of human trafficking and rescue women and children who are currently caught up in it.
For these women and children, I’m sure the concept of “Independence” conjures up emotions and feelings much different to ours. While we think about being freed from the chains of government regulations and Corporate America monopolies, they dream of one day escaping the chains of sex slavery.
In lieu of this year’s Independence day, which is typically celebrated with good food, friends, and fireworks, can I suggest that we also celebrate by adding a small gesture of goodwill into the mix of it all? In his very short speech yesterday, Buddy Rathmell also advised that one of their largest sponsors recently retired and is no longer able to contribute on a regular basis. If you’ll please take the time to visit the website StopSlavery.org, I hope you will find it in your heart to give a small donation (to help break the chains of literal captivity and oppression), and here is how I propose that we do this:
- On Independence Day, when you head out for your morning or evening run, view it as a “Run For Freedom” run, with the aim of donating a single dollar for every mile you run.
- Send your payments either to me (via paypal to email@example.com, cash – in person, or check – in person or by post to PSC 557, Box 1692, FPO AP 96379), or donate directly via the website. If you donate directly via the website, would you mind:
- a) selecting Buddy and Jen Rathmell under the option which asks you which fund you would like to donate to,
- b) typing in Run For Freedom where it asks you to enter your “Organization”
- c) sending me a short message (firstname.lastname@example.org), advising that you made a contribution
Please consider making a difference this Independence Day, and make your run worth it!
[For the non-runners reading this post – please also consider making a donation of $5, $10, $25, or any other set amount]