MDG's: Why Bother? ~ Justin Pullins - Op-Ed

Development is one of our nation’s key issues. From infrastructure like roads and schools, to educational and societal development, which allows our country to move forward. Our nation’s developmental goals allow us not only to push forward, but gives the people something to look forward to. However, this nation’s goals of development are constantly merged with the goals of other nations. Is this the right direction?


At the turn of the millennium, the United Nations issued an ambitious set of goals entitled the “Millennium Development Goals”, which were to insure rights for hundreds of people around the world. These goals include things like give every child a suitable education; reduce child mortality rates, and many other great things that would, theoretically, better the lives of many people. However, what’s the expense to the US, and other super-nations, left to pull the weight of these poor nations?


For one, this should not be taken as a justification of selfishness and excuse to become frugal and hesitant with giving, especially in major times of need, such as natural disasters. That isn’t the goal here, and that thinking will leave one nowhere. However, the belief is that one shouldn’t blame themselves for situations and predicaments that are not one’s fault, nor should we take the reigns of other nation’s problems.


Foreign aid is an issue that is no “foreigner” to America. In 2008, figures estimate that nearly 25 billion dollars was reserved for foreign aid. Though a percentage of these went to issues of natural disasters and universal democratic uprisings, however most of these went to those precedents set by that list theoretical dreams known as the “Millennium Development Goals”.  These goals, in the expert opinion of many, cannot be reached within the allotted goal set, which is 2015. In short, from 2000 to the present, the US has spent an approximate of 100’s of billions of dollars, for goals that the majority believes will not be reached. This proves a major waste of many taxpayers’ money and many politicians ‘ time.


Also, who’s to say that America has any part to play in any of this? As a nation, we have no blood on our hands, no position to blame, and therefore no legitimate reason, beyond the kindness of our hearts, to continue our continued support. However, we do, and we should, as once again, that is not the issue. However, in a time where money is tight and people are struggling to make ends meet, this “kind giving” needs to meet its limit.