Thursday, October 25, 2007

There Must Be a Better Way to Make History

On August 6th of 1945, the United States dropped the first atomic bomb to be used in warfare on the largest city of Japan's largest island. About a mile away, there lived a little two year old girl named Sasaki Sadako. Nine years later, Sadako got sick. A few months after that, she was hospitalized with leukemia, an effect of the radiation from the bomb, and given a year to live, at most.

During her hospital stay, she learned of a Japanese legend: the Gods would look with favor upon a person who could fold one thousand origami cranes and grant them a wish. Sadako wanted to get well, so she started folding. She folded medicine wrappers and paper from other patients get well gifts while she was in the hospital. She folded one thousand three hundred cranes before her death, this day in 1955.

Today, the legend of the wish granted to the folder of one thousand cranes lives on. School children all over the world fold cranes and send them to Sadako's memorial in Hiroshima. The collective wish of these children is peace. At the foot of her statue, the plaque reads, "This is our cry. This is our prayer. Peace in the world."

Folding one thousand cranes is no small task. It's more challenging than I thought it would be. But I set myself this goal, and I will not restart. I will fold until I'm done. While peace in this very troubled world is an admirable goal, I must admit that my wish will be my own.

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