Her name is Fatmata. She is an African mother. And this is her story.
KAMPALA, UGANDA ✦A pregnant woman here in Uganda’s capital was recently beheaded by her husband. Maurine Ampire, 38, was a mother getting close to delivering number six. It’s one picture of life here, and a comparable image to the lack of voice that pregnant women have worldwide. No voice. No choice. Just death, and often violently.
Women and children, in New Orleans or the Third World, often suffer the most in disasters.
Tomorrow is Mother's Day. Most of us will likely say thanks to your mom in some fashion. Good thing. A mother's job is not easy.
This country is one of contrasts. Red-dirt roads cross lush- green landscapes. People familiar with war smile easily and greet you genuinely. Beauty meets ugliness, plenty meets want, and life meets death here. Uganda may be, as Winston Churchill said, the Pearl of Africa. But, if so, it's a tarnished jewel.
Sunday is Mother's Day, and I'm reminded that I've never held my mother, looked into her eyes and told her that I love her. I've never offered a soft kiss on her cheek. I've never even given my mother flowers. My mom died before I got the chance.
Folks who lined up to throw pies at the prime minister for his candid suggestion that 9/11 was linked with growing global disparities and Western greed may want to stop reading this. The rest of you may meet my wife, Jean, a woman I thank God for every day.