All lives matter

The Black Lives Matter, Blue Lives Matter and All Lives Matter campaigns emphasize the respect, dignity and worth of individuals, that none should shrug off their deaths as unimportant. To the universal “All lives matter” we need to all … “including the unborn.”
Such words come easily, tossed about to prove a point and too quickly are then lost in the duress of daily life. There are no such slogans for two Vietnamese. They don’t talk, they simply live a daily example of respect and dignity for the smallest of humans. These two, Tong Phuoc Phuc and Pham Thi Cuong, have demonstrated this truth for years. Day in and day out, both have carefully and respectfully buried the tiny bodies of unwanted children who were aborted or abandoned after being born. They also have provided homes for babies who survived their mother’s rejection.
The difficult birth of his own child initiated Tong Phuoc Phuc’s journey. Waiting for hours during his wife’s labor, Phuc watched other women come into the hospital pregnant and leave without a child. Slowly he realized ‘why’. It impacted him beyond words. Phuc had to do something. He determined he would provide a burial for each infant rather than allow their little bodies to be trashed.
Phuc did not see these children as garbage. He wanted them to at least have the dignity of a burial. This building contractor did not just talk about the fact that the lives of the unborn matter, he bought property on the side of a mountain and prepared a very neat, highly organized cemetery. He received permission to receive the bodies. Over the past 15 years Phuc has buried over 10,000 aborted children. Each has their own burial plot and marker in graves that Phuc decorates with flowers. An Associated Press video shows him placing one flower in the holder of each the tiny, carefully graves marked with the date of death.
As the cemetery grew, people began talking about it and his respect and honor for the dignity the unborn. The story of his concern brought women to his door asking if he would take their child, when it was born. Phuc and his family agreed and have provided a home for over 100 children. Some mothers have later returned and reunited with their child. That is Phuc’s ultimate goal: reunion of child and mother; so the children are not available for adoption. As his mission became known, others have contributed to provide the funds and workers needed to sustain the children’s home and the cemetery.
Cuong began burying babies after she discovered a moving, breathing, abandoned newborn in a bag of trash. The child was covered with flies. Despite her efforts, the child died, but it began her constant search for other thrown away children. According to Vietnam News, since that first child, Cuong has found many thrown away babies, some alive, some dead. She buries the dead and finds homes for the children who survive.
She finds the babies in trash bags left on the sidewalk. Sometimes animals have found them first. “It gives me the chills,” she said. “But then I thought about their really short life of being abandoned, not even having a place to rest when they died, I still tried to bring them home.”
Not all agree with her mission. Some say this poor woman should focus on taking care of herself. Others call her an ‘angel’ and at least one person has joined her in the search for abandoned children.
Cuong’s story is similar to a Chinese woman, Lou Xiaoying who recycles trash for a living. The Daily Mail reported Xiaoying has found and rescued 30 infants in dumpsters and cared for them as her own. “I realized if we had strength enough to collect garbage, how could we not recycle something as important as human lives. These children need love and care,” she said. “They are all precious human lives. I do not understand how people can leave such a vulnerable baby on the streets.”
That’s what it should mean, when we say Black Lives Matter, Blue Lives Matter, All Lives Matter – including the unborn. Three Asians know this truth without all the hype. It should also be true in our country for both the party that wants to “Make America great again” and the party that “fights for everyone.”
Let both parties prove their slogans by working to show that even the Smallest of Lives Matter. When we begin caring for even the most vulnerable, when we recognize their right to life, then we all can fully realize we are created equal and enjoy our life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.