Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Who needs Cable?

Last night, I caught Stephen Lewis give this year's Massey Lecture. Here, I shall shamelessly plug him, and CBC too. You can catch the second part of his lecture tonight - no matter where you are on this fine yet fucked up planet. Stephen Lewis was appointed by the UN's Secretary-General as Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa. He's also a Canuk. My first reaction, was mild, if reactionary - mostly apathetic at best. "Another white male bureaucrat touting the plight of Africans - again?" (see I told you it was apathetic)

Well. I've never heard him speak before. I've been listening to CBC radio hosts gush over him over the past few weeks. Shelagh Rogers drives me particularily crazy. I don't know who to pay attention to anymore - because she gushes over anyone. If someone farted Oh Canada! She'd gush. And then she'd wax eloquent. It's getting old. Anyway...so there has been much poo-pooing about Stephen Lewis as of late. I suspect that this is connected to him giving this year's Massey Lecture. So, as I was driving home last night, and I heard the man speak.

Now I understand the rise of the third Reich. We all sit back and scratch our heads in beguilement about how a nation could rise and rally around a pipsqueak of a man formally known as Adolph Sticklegruber. He was a fine orator. I was moved by Stephen Lewis last night. I jumped out of the van, ran into the house and turned on the radio to hear the remainder of the show. If he would have commanded us to stick out asses out the door and collectively fart Oh! Canada, I would have dropped my pants. His message was clear, if not shamefully scathing. He explained the complicated roles of the IMF, World Development Bank, G8, G7 - he dropped the names of all the polical and economic heavyweights with such clarity, I was neither lost nor bored. He expressed with such poignant zeal the plight of African nations being constantly stonewalled by western bureaucracies - Organizations which care nothing about human life, and everything about profit. These are things that I think I would have assumed. Stephen Lewis demands these organizations to start serving humanity before dollars. I'm not much of a politician. I follow what I can, but tend to tune out when the language starts name and acronym dropping. Stephen Lewis, spoke so beautifully to people like me - who really care, but feel they do not quite understand the complicated mess we are in.

If Stephen Lewis asked me to go move a mountain, I'd find my shovel. I was enraptured, and enragedas I listened to the radio folks. To say that this speach was amazing, is a gross understatement. I openly sobbed at the end of last nights talk. Yes. Openly sobbed.

I've never looked forward to a radio show before. Who needs cable when you have CBC?

1 comment:

Stephen (aka Q) said...

Stephen Lewis speaks like one of the Old Testament prophets — at least, on this issue he does. It is powerfully convicting! You can only hang your head in shame at the moral corruption of the Western world for not intervening.

btw, your neighbours should be grateful he didn't ask you to stick your butt out the window and fart O Canada.
lol, Q