I think those who design bridges must be among the smartest people on earth.
I think that nurses are some of the most compassionate people on the earth.
And I've always said that Firefighters are the bravest people on earth. The men and women who, every single day put themselves in harms way for strangers. They run into burning buildings, climb big and dangerous structures and often end up saving someone who really caused the incident themselves because of their own negligence (leaving the stove on) or ignorance (smoking in bed). I remember during the 911 crisis how much I admired their selflessness. We all owe them a debt of gratitude for what they do for us. Today however, I have a new addition to my "brave" category.
Journalists who travel to hostile foreign lands to bring information back to us...so we can act.
These men and women go to places that are usually in the middle of frightening, oppressive, damaging, dangerous and serious crisis type situations. Violent Wars, Devastating Poverty, Oppressive Regimes, Desperate Revolt, Intensive Weather...journalists have always gone in for us. And I'm grateful to them. I'm especially grateful to two young women who are now caught in a legal nightmare because they were simply doing their jobs.
The legal proceedings have ended with a conviction and a sentence of 12 years in a labor camp for Laura Ling and Euna Lee. Gratitude for the "selflessness" of these two brave American Journalists...is what's on my mind today.
I want to thank them for caring so much about our world...especially the dangerous and scary places...that you and I wouldn't know about...but for them.
I'm cautious about what I say now, because rhetoric is what they don't need right now. The North Korean judicial system, such that it is, has ended. Now diplomacy can step in. Because of the oppressive regime, The United States has no diplomatic relationship with North Korea...so diplomatic "back channels" is the only way to make headway in bringing these journalists home to their families.
This is a humanitarian issue. These women are not bargaining chips. They should not be used as pawns in some international game of chess. They clearly had no intent to commit a crime in North Korea or to cross into the hostile territory of North Korea. The irony is that apparently, they were researching and reporting on North Korea refugees...those fleeing the North for their own safety in search of freedom. The world has a lot of issues with North Korea...but none of them have anything to do with these young journalists.
They did their jobs honorably and "selflessly" for us...so now it is our turn to show our gratitude for their bravery.
I encourage our country to use those back channels to do what you have to do to bring these women home. And I beseech all of us who love information, enjoy freedom and have benefitted from the sacrifices of the brave men and women who report the news across the globe...to send a message of support. And pray...
To sign a petition in support of the release of Laura and Euna, click here.
Posted by Star Jones Esq at 6:54 AM