Nota Bene: I am doing Holidailies this year...during finals...we'll see how that goes...if you have followed a link, please comment or let me know you're out there...I'm new at this...
There's a grief that can't be spoken, there's a pain goes on and on.
Empty chairs at empty tables, now my friends are dead and gone.
Here they talked of revolution. Here it was they lit the flame.
Here they sang about `tomorrow,' and tomorrow never came.
From the table in the corner they could see a world reborn
And they rose with voices ringing...I can hear them now!
The very words that they had sung became their last communion
On the lonely barricade at dawn.
Oh my friends, my friends forgive me, that I live and you are gone.
There's a grief that can't be spoken. There's a pain goes on and on.
Phantom faces at the window. Phantom shadows on the floor.
Empty chairs at empty tables where my friends will meet no more.
Oh my friends, my friends, don't ask me, what your sacrifice was for
Empty chairs at empty tables where my friends will sing no more.
-Les Miserables, "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables"
Despite the fact that celebrities no longer wear AIDS ribbons on their tuxedo lapels like grooms wear boutonnieres, people are still dying of AIDS. In America, we have the luxury of drug cocktails, early detection, proper education and the ability to live HIV positive- we've come so far from the days of Pedro Zamora and Tom Hanks winning an Oscar for "Philadelphia." We know that AIDS isn't a gay man's disease, we have researched and learned. We still have so far to go.
AIDS is still a scourge on Africa and other less rich and fortunate places in the globe. We get into so many issues with drug companies and how far we can/should/need to go to help get what we've got to those who don't have it. I could go into how Bono's got it right, and we should be concentrating on third world debt relief (he is), or how stupid the Bush administration is regarding prescriptives and Canada and drug company subsidies and compassionate corporate citizenship (they are), but I won't, because I am a law student who barely has time to write this post, much less do enough research to present my findings in a thoughtful and erudite way.
Instead I will just leave you with the sentiment above, and will find a small part of my budget with which to try and help, in whatever small, bourgeois, miniscule way I can.
Remember. Fight. Love.
Edited to add: I'm humbled. A thousand thanks to the panel, and special ups to my girl Kate for calling it to my attention.