OPTIMISTS are alive and well

and …they believe in our future!

I watched Bill Gates do a YouTube video yesterday and he touted all the reasons that the world is getting ‘better’ for upcoming generations.

Despite a seemingly never-ending stream of negative headlines, Bill Gates explains why nothing is as bad as it seems.

‘Being able to communicate on a regular basis with people around the world is better and richer too’ he says.

I loved his optimistic attitude.

Many feel that overpopulation is the root of where many of the world problems stem. Gates is working tirelessly toward his goal of helping to curtail it.

“Melinda and our partners, including (the) UK (United Kingdom government), had an event where we stated a goal for getting the new contraceptives out.

Our 2020 target of making sure 120 million more women have access to contraceptives (the number current stands at plus-30 million since 2012) is very aggressive and we’re a bit behind, but we’re looking at the public and private channel and figuring out how do we get this all out there.”

“I’m intent that these infectious diseases, which account for why most of these children die in poor countries, I think in the next 20 or 30 years we can get rid of that.’

That’s optimistic!

‘Polio is what we’ll try and drive to zero, from less than 50 cases last year. We hope to get to zero in 2018, and that starts a 3 year clock to make sure they’re certain it’s gone.
“Doing this work makes you see that the general trend line is good.’
People are more literate around the world. They eat better, they live longer. So it would take some pretty extreme things in the political realm, like lots of wars, before you even temporarily set back this global progress.”

Because of the efforts of his foundation The Bill and Melinda Gates foundation, overall they reduced the population growth in places like Africa with contraception and nutrition programs.

“Instead of having a child die and then having to have more children, these parents had their child survive.”

YAY Bill Gates! WOW. This is all very hopeful. I really appreciate optimism in this seemingly negative world.

I must admit I am not nor have ever been too optimistic. I’ve tended to side in the pessimist camp quite a lot.

I’m not sure I can relate to this OPTIMIST CREED I found, but optimism is a nice lofty goal to have eh?

Speaking of total optimists… I saw another one on tv last night.

Ben Ferencz is the last living Nuremberg prosecutor, and he is personally responsible for bringing 22 Nazi SS officers to justice after World War II.

He also helped liberate the concentration camps and saw unthinkable crimes committed towards men, women and children. He still tears up just talking about what he saw.

At the age of 97, he is still fighting for progress and social justice.

I saw him being interviewed Sunday night on the CBS News program 60 Minutes, host Leslie Stahl noted that Ferencz had faced evil but is “the sunniest man I’ve ever met.’

He saw unspeakable horrors (while liberating a few concentration camps) but he’s still …sunny?

Ok this guys definitely got my attention.

He, like Bill Gates also said mostly optimistic things about our future and future of the world.

Regarding war (or people being fundamentally evil) Ferencz told Stahl that Nuremburg taught him that

‘…war made murderers out of men. Do you think the man who dropped the nuclear bomb on Hiroshima was a savage? Now I will tell you something very profound, which I have learned after many years. War makes murderers out of otherwise decent people…’

His main mantra seems to be: We must stop war making. He also kept his lighthearted and infectious sense of humor through it all.

‘You have a great sense of humor. How do you approach such serious subjects?’ Stahl asked him.

‘It’s very simple. If you are crying on the inside, you better be laughing on the outside, or you’ll drown in tears. [Pause] That’s it.

“People get discouraged,” he said of today’s wars. “They should remember, from me, it takes courage not to be discouraged.”

He was asked if many people perceive him of being naive. He responded:

Well, if it’s naive to want peace instead of war, let ’em make sure they say I’m naive. Because I want peace instead of war. If they tell me they want war instead of peace, I don’t say they’re naive, I say they’re stupid. Stupid to an incredible degree to send young people out to kill other young people they don’t even know, who never did anybody any harm, never harmed them. That is the current system. I am naive? That’s insane.

What I found most interesting and encouraging about Ben Ferencz was his thoughts on recent news and Trump.

Even though most people (friends) I know seem to have a more Doomsday-ish attitude lately about the state of the world Frencz said that even in the age of Donald Trump, the world is “on a roll.”

“We’re marching forward,” the 97-year-old activist insisted. “And I’m still in there fighting. And you know what keeps me going?

I know I’m right.”

Lets hope Bill Gates and Ben Ferencz are right. I think its refreshing to hear about people with optimistic attitudes these days. Thanks Bill Gates and Ben Ferencz for starting my day on an up note.


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