Note: I want to share with you a bit of the life of one of my very dear friends from England. Baroness Caroline Cox is one of my heroes. This short introduction is taken from my soon-to-be-released book, “Better Off: Rediscovering the American Experiment.” In the weeks that follow, the JOURNAL HIGHLIGHTS series will include excerpts from my actual journals that cover our work together in the little country of Nagorno- Karabakh Keep an eye open for the new book release.
One Tough and Compassionate Lady
When it comes to personifying the economics of the interior, I don’t believe there is any finer example in our contemporary era than Baroness Caroline Cox.
Caroline Cox became a registered nurse in the 1950s and met her future husband, Murray, while working at a London hospital. After marrying and starting a family, Caroline earned a first-class honors degree in sociology at the University of London and a master’s degree in economics. She went on to write several books on nursing and teach sociology at a London university, where she collided head-on with academic elites who forced their Marxist views on the students.
After enduring years of their intimidation, she coauthored The Rape of Reason, which courageously exposed their warped beliefs at a time when standing for democratic ideals was extremely unpopular. In 1977, Caroline embraced a new challenge as the director of nursing education research at Chelsea College, University of London.
Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was so impressed with Caroline’s indomitable spirit, high energy, and brilliant work that she exerted her considerable influence to see Caroline become Baroness Cox of Queensbury and a life peer in the House of Lords in January of 1983. Lady Cox became Deputy Speaker of the House of Lords in 1985 and served in that position until 2005.
What did Baroness Caroline Cox do with her new title and position of influence?
Instead of just parking herself on the red leather benches in the gilded chamber of the House of Lords, Baroness Cox began using the precious assets in her market basket to help other people become better off. Penetrating the Iron Curtain of the Soviet Union, she risked her life to deliver load after load of desperately needed humanitarian goods to Communist Poland, Romania, and Armenia.
Lady Cox also sought to help the people of Nagorno-Karabakh. Mass murderer Joseph Stalin had arbitrarily separated the small country from its motherland, Armenia, and had given it to Azerbaijan to placate the violent Muslim extremists. Eventually Azerbaijan, Turkey, and Russia embarked on a plan of ethnic cleansing that would systematically annihilate the inhabitants of Nagorno-Karabakh. Baroness Cox stood up in the House of Lords and brought the situation to the attention of Parliament and the world. No one else seemed to care … except Baroness Caroline Cox. But Lady Cox didn’t just talk about the situation; she sprang into action. She traveled to Yerevan, Armenia, climbed into a military helicopter, and flew into the war-torn enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh to help evacuate the wounded and dying. Her nurse’s training also equipped her to provide essential medical care to the evacuees.
I first met Baroness Cox in 1997 when she and her executive assistant, Stuart Windsor, came to Colorado to get better acquainted with Project C.U.R.E. After learning about our international experience, they had determined that we were the best organization to help them with their humanitarian work in Nagorno-Karabakh.
I joined the baroness on her thirty-ninth trip to the decimated country, where I learned that she had once walked directly through the line of weapon fire, waving a white tablecloth attached to a branch, and crossed the Azerbaijan border to personally confront the Muslim thugs who had been murdering the Karabakh inhabitants and torching their homes. She was determined to meet these thugs face-to-face so they would take her seriously. They soon learned that Caroline Cox was one tough lady!
Over the years her compassionate endeavors have led her into many zones of conflict throughout the world, including Sudan, Nigeria, Uganda, Myanmar (Burma), and Indonesia. She even injected goodness into the former Soviet Federation, helping government officials change their policies on orphaned and abandoned children and establish a foster-care system that would place children in families rather than institutions. (I would enthusiastically encourage you to read Andrew Boyd’s book Baroness Cox: A Voice for the Voiceless, which chronicles Lady Cox’s inspiring life story and the magnificent humanitarian work she has been involved in.)
Baroness Cox has received many international awards for her humanitarian work, including the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland; the prestigious Wilberforce Award; the international Mother Teresa Award; the Mkhitar Gosh medal conferred by the president of the Republic of Armenia; the anniversary medal presented by Lech Walesa, former president of Poland; and an honorary fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians in London, England.
After all these years, Lady Caroline Cox is still investing her life, her unique abilities, and her influential position to spread goodness around the globe. She’s a classic example of how just one person, guided by the economics of the interior, can help others become better off.
Next Week: Connecting with Project C.U.R.E.
© Dr. James W. Jackson
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