The phenomenal soul of the giver is omnipresent despite the predominance of stories about the sordid and banal characteristics of life. We see that soul every time there is clarion call for help and it echoes through the hearts of all Americans.
It doesn’t matter what kind of tragedy inflicts our communities, by the thousands people come bearing, not only the gift of service and time, but also material gifts. With the tragedy of 9/11, with Katrina and New Orleans, with earthquakes and tornadoes, miles of material show up, piles of goods are delivered, and so too are smiles with every donation of money and time. This is the spirit of America in action manifesting into a harmony of help and confirming the axiom that I am my brother’s keeper.
Individuals, corporations, unions and organizations, overwhelmingly unselfishly volunteer and respond to the collective ache of humankind whenever it’s needed and validate that there is a friendship of strangers.
No one knows all the names of those in need in any situation. It doesn’t matter, names are not important when you know someone is hurting. The human face is one in time of need. The community of America and often beyond looks upon that face and responds with abundance and compassion.
It was Thoreau who said, “What lies before us and what lies behind us are small matters compared to what lies within us. And when we bring what is within out into the world, miracles happen.”