OUR WORLD THIS SUMMER
India is currently victim to what officials are calling the 5th deadliest heat wave in history. As of June 2nd, over 2,300 people have died, and the amount of electricity demanded by air conditioner use has left some cities without power. Primarily affected are southern states such as Andhra Pradesh, although temperatures are soaring throughout the entire nation.
Temperatures have climbed up to 45º Celsius, hot enough to melt pavement. Relief was expected to come in the form of monsoon rains, but as of yet have not made an impact.
Many of those who succumbed to the heat did not have access to shelter or enough water to drink, so the city of Hyderabad has initiated watering stations to provide a free drink for those in need.
Pakistan also fell victim to the heat this summer, resulting in the death of over 1,200 people. Many casualties were those fasting for religious purposes, resulting in dehydration; the former director general of the Pakistani Environmental Protection Agency claims that unreliable weather reports may have contributed to these deaths, because citizens were unprepared for the deadly heat.
Just over one year after Time Magazine’s Transgender Tipping Point featuring Laverne Cox, Caitlyn Jenner graces the cover of Vanity Fair, ready to tell her story. It begins with fear, repression, secrecy, and rejection, but takes a turn toward healing and self-acceptance. Buzz Bissinger details Jenner’s recent physical transformation, as well as her first physical transformation efforts way back in the 1980’s, which she halted out of fear, largely due to her status as a male Olympic medalist. Caitlyn has decided to share her story with the world in hopes of furthering her own healing.
This year, the FIFA Women’s world cup is being held in Canada, along with the Pan American and Para Pan American Games. As of June 24th, the FIFA top scorer and top attacker is Germany, with a total of 19 goals and 117 attempts so far, and their youngest team member is only 19 years old!
The Pan Am games began with a torch relay ceremony, beginning in Mexico and travelling to Canada, eventually reaching over 130 communities in total. The games begin on July 7th, preceded by the Para Pan Am games one month later; the Para Pan Am games invites athletes with physical disabilities to participate in sporting events including wheelchair rugby and sitting volleyball, among others. Let the games begin!
This month, Muslims all over the world celebrate Ramadan, a time for physical and emotional cleansing through a month long fast. During daylight hours, Muslims will refrain from food and drink, as well as smoking, lying and gossiping, or any other wrongful vice or behavior. This holy month is a time to seek forgiveness, and to focus on becoming one’s best self.
Many see fasting is used as a way to empathize with the hungry; when the sun sets, practicing Muslims will break their fast with water and a meal, but many people around the world are starving every day, without food or water to break their “fast”. Fasting is also used as a disciplinary tool; it takes immense dedication and commitment to avoid a quick trip to McDonald’s or Starbucks, but fasting gives one a great inner strength, as well as many other great rewards. Are you fasting this month? Tell us your favourite meal to break your fast! Have a safe and blessed month, Ramadan Kareem!