This child met my gaze at the 2013 Kumbh Mela, a Hindu bathing festival in rural India, where her family was working. She stands just a few yards from a new-built latrine and the faucet providing piped clean water to this workers’ camp. Simply because she is a poor girl, her chance of education is dismal and, according to recent research on maternal literacy, her literacy level will someday directly affect her children’s health. Yet unlike Americans, she lives in a nation that ratified (official accepted under law) the International Covenant on Social, Economic and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), meaning that families like hers ought to be able to enjoy equal rights to food, housing, and education. I see here a little girl hugging a beloved blanket. What do you see?
Susan is a deeply compassionate Christian and a simply first-rate scholar. Please check out her new book Beholden: Religion, Global Health, and Human Rights.