The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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G-8 Summit gives few answers to big problems

Eight leaders from the world’s wealthiest industrial powers held their annual meeting recently, and I’m left with one burning question: why?

The G-8 Summit is a meeting where world leaders gather to discuss various issues and deal with some of the major economic and political concerns facing their nations and the rest of the world.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair hosted this year’s conference, which was held in Scotland. Topics on the agenda included climate change, the threat of global warming and the augmentation of economic aid in Africa, among other things.

All of these topics seem very interesting, as well as attention-worthy, and one expects that world leaders would be able to come up with great solutions to these problems.

The sad part is that they produced no such solutions.

The topic of climate change and global warming resulted in the leaders agreeing that these were urgent issues to look into, but other than that, nothing else was decided. What does that have to say about our leaders, and about our world?

It’s very disappointing, and ridiculous, that the world’s most powerful leaders came together and agreed that we have a global warming problem when everyone else knew that long before any G-8 meeting took place. Why waste time and money agreeing on something that is already known when a solution should be discussed. Is this what the leaders of the world do every day?

Here we were thinking that they’re actually working extremely hard coming up with solutions to serious problems, but instead, they’re taking their sweet time, flying around the globe “world leader-style” while the rest of us work hard at our own jobs.

Additionally, the African aid package discussed at the summit sounds great. It’s very sad to see the images that remind us of how poor some nations really are, and how much people are actually suffering.

At the end of the day, the G-8 Summit resulted in Prime Minister Blair announcing that monetary aid to Africa would be increased to $50 billion by 2010.

That sounds great, but where is all this money coming from? Is it not coming from tax-paying citizens in the United States? It’s amazing that aid can go to poor people who are so far away, but wouldn’t it make a little more sense to help those who are poor here at home first, as there are certainly plenty?

It is understandable that Africa as a whole needs a lot of aid in many areas. There are disease and poverty issues that surely need to be addressed.

However, Africa is not the only nation facing these issues. There are other countries around the world facing a similar situations. If this aid is going to be given, shouldn’t it be going to other places, too? Why only Africa? Attention should be paid to other places.

We’ve all traveled to different places around the world and we’ve all seen poverty in some form –Africa is not alone.

In recent decades, the continent of Africa has received a lot of monetary aid from countries like ours, totaling somewhere in the billions of dollars. What is going on there that after all this help, the continent is still facing the same, if not worse, conditions?

The money should be handled in a way that will create effective progress on the continent. Perhaps there should be less emphasis placed on how much money will be raised or given to Africa, and instead placed on how this money will be spent, who will be in control of it, where it’s going, etc.

Instead of spending loads of money to put on concerts to “raise awareness” of world poverty, perhaps it would be best to sit down and have a real meeting to seriously discuss what will be done and how all nations, not just one, can be helped. We all know that world poverty exists; we’ve all seen it, heard it and smelled it.

Getting together to sing a song will not make poverty go away.

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