There is no reason to believe that our actions, good and bad, are tallied up on some cosmic scorecard that determines who goes where in a mythical afterlife. There is even less reason to believe that following a particular religion's mythology is the key. Acts of love and kindness are their own reward - in this life, and that's reason enough for them.
I'm writing this on Valentine's Day, supposedly a day to celebrate love, and also the day that Jasso went to his new home. Taking him in was an act of love, but letting him go was even more so. Jasso had a particularly compelling story, but he didn't deserve rescue any more than any of the millions of other dogs in shelters across this country. All the abandoned pit bulls and hounds, and "outdoor dogs" who never knew love or a caring touch are equally deserving of rescue simply because they are living creatures in need of it. While it is somehow easier to show compassion to dogs, particularly dogs that we love, the principle is equally applicable to our fellow humans who need help.
A culture that applauds the uninsured dying for lack of healthcare that our society can and should extend to all is not a culture that I want to be a part of. A culture that "mainstreamed" the mentally ill out of care facilities and onto the streets is sick. A culture that turns its back on refugees and ignores a humanitarian crisis because it's not in our backyard is itself worthy of contempt. Compassion isn't weakness. It takes no effort to turn away from those in need. It takes strength of character to extend a hand and help. Killing is easy and cowardly compared to the effort it takes to save a life, help others, and make peace. The fact that we can't do it all is no excuse for doing nothing.
|We sent him off with this care package of|
meds, shampoo, his favorite comb, and a
tag for his new collar that reads:
"Keep Calm and Carry On"
|It's harder to let the old guys go than it is to say|
goodbye to the young, healthy ones who have
their whole lives ahead of them still.
|He seemed to know that something was up, but he was as|
cooperative as ever and got into the car to go to his new home.
|If even half the people in this world were even half as|
decent as this dog, the world would be a much better place.
P.S. Jasso sleeping his first night in his new home