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Paul Allen just passed away. His self worth? Estimated at roughly US$20 Billion.

I wonder for which people most remember him — that he owned the Seattle Seahawks, and the Minnesota Timberwolves, or that he was co-founder of Microsoft.

Anyone who could have turned the Seattle Seahawks into a perennial top team in the NFL earns my chops any day — more than all of that Microsoft stuff.

But then again, he was a philanthropist, which always is a good thing.

When Mother Theresa died, having been a Nun all her life, her self worth probably amounted to no more than the clothes on her back. Regardless, the whole world mourned like she was royalty.

When Martin Luther King Jnr. was assassinated, he probably was not worth up to US$1 million. All of America — his detractors inclusive — were affected by his death.

Do we really know how much more progress African Americans, or Blacks generally have made with respect to civil rights since passing away of Martin Luther King Jnr.?

Better still, has there been any meaningful or significant progress in civil rights?

The educational statistics do not lie. Juxtaposed with Asians and Latinos, Blacks are losing ground educationally. While Latinos and Asians are gaining in access to College, Blacks are losing access. Whatever the reasons, does not sound like improvements in civil rights to me.

When Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated, this while on his way to attempting to persuade Pakistan and India to live together as brothers, there is no way he was worth up to US$1 million. Love or hate the intensity of his ascetic lifestyle, the whole world mourned.

When Indira Gandhi was mowed down by her Sikh guards, this after attempting to make peace with Sikhs, and as sign of good faith maintaining Sikh guards, people wondered just how much worth is placed on peace, goodwill, and good faith in society. If maintaining of her Sikh guards was not a sufficient signal of goodwill, just what would have sufficed.

Americans did not mourn John F. Kennedy because he was from an American ‘royal’ family, or because he had odes of money in the bank. Rather, they mourned because regardless of those things, he was down to earth, seemed approachable, appeared to care about the average American citizen. His essence was more important than either of his pedigree or bank balance.

When Pope John Paul II was shot; in the intermission people despaired not because of how much money he had in the bank, or perhaps how much good he had done.

People despaired because a Pope dying from an assassination attempt seemed to bode evil for the world. Luckily for us all we never found out whatever evil his death from assassination could have portended. Pope John Paul II survived his wounds.

When Nelson Mandela died, there was an outpouring of love from all over the world, not because of how much money he had made, not because he became President of South Africa, but because a man who had been sorely mistreated was magnanimous, loving, forgiving in victory.

A man who was mistreated sought reconciliation, voluntarily offered forgiveness to those at whose hands he had suffered mistreatment.

Written by

Educator and Researcher, Believer in Spirituality, Life is serious business, but we all are pilgrims so I write about important stuff with empathy and ethos

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