Aid To Haiti: Heroes And Villains

January 26, 2010

Where’s Hugo when he’s really needed?

There are those who step up to the plate in times of crisis. Then there are those who simply turn their heads and pretend not to see. This is what separates the “Do-ers” from the “Talkers.”

Case in point: When Haiti was struck by the devastating 7.0+ Earthquake on January 12th, the United States was amongst the first to respond with aid in the form of search and rescue, medical and food–as usual. Other countries were also quick to respond, but the bulk of the assistance arrived from the U.S. This should come as no surprise, given our response to the tsunami victims several years ago as well as all the other international tragedies requiring humanitarian response. It’s what we do.

It should also come as no surprise that there are those who are eager to criticize us. The man President Obama wanted so desperately to be buddies with in Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, wins the prize as the world’s biggest absentee and hypocrite. 

To date, Venezuela has donated absolutely nothing to the relief efforts in Haiti, while the Unites States has made the largest contribution in money, food, supplies and military support. The military support is for the sole purpose of helping to provide security in the stricken area where desperation has caused people to resort to unspeakable brutality on each other as they scramble for food, shelter and aid.

Here’s a breakdown of the top countries making donations to the relief effort:  Read the rest of this entry »


Dear Leader Is No Leader in Charity

January 21, 2010

 

One might think that a $15,000 donation to charity for victims of Haiti’s earthquakes is a generous response to a terrible tragedy. In general, one might be correct.

In particular, this $15,000 donation came yesterday, more than a week after the 7.0 magnitude quake decimated the small nation. It came from our President and First Lady, out of their personal bank account. And it came for the following reason:

“[T]he Obamas were inspired to give upon seeing the response of millions of Americans who have given generously during tough economic times.” [Link]

Not the day of the earthquake; not the day after, nor the day after that. It was over a week later that the Obamas decided to donate. Not because they realized that the cause was worthy, but because the generosity of the American people was showing them up.

Americans have been giving at what could be a record pace. According to the Chronicle of Philanthropy, as of Saturday, $150 million has been donated by Americans.

That’s more than the U.S. government has committed so far…

Not that this lack of generosity is unusual for the Obamas. As the Huffington Post reports:

Up until recent years when their income increased sharply from book revenues and a Senate salary, Obama’s family donated a relatively minor amount of its earnings to charity. From 2000 through 2004, the senator and his wife never gave more than $3,500 a year in charitable donations — about 1 percent of their annual earnings. In 2005, however, that total jumped to $77,315 (4.7 percent of annual earnings), and to $60,307 in 2006 (6.1 percent).

Among those charitable donations, the Obamas listed “a $13,107 contribution to the Congressional Black Caucus as a charity gift”, HuffPo states.

Americans are arguably the most generous people in the world. Whenever there is a need, Americans donate tens and hundreds of millions of dollars almost instantly. Regardless of the economic situation or the state of our bank accounts, we donate whatever we can. Not only in emergencies like Haiti, but also on a regular basis, we donate to food pantries, soup kitchens, orphanages, church outreach efforts. We are Americans. We give.

It is unfortunate, then, that our nation’s leader only gives when it becomes politically expedient.

Stoutcat


2010’s “Caput Capitis in Rectum” Winner: Pat Robertson

January 14, 2010


Just my humble opinion… Pat Robertson gets my vote for 2010’s “Caput Capitis in Rectum” Award! 

This is what gives conservatism (and Christianity) a bad name.

Alan Speakman


Hell In Haiti – How You Can Help

January 13, 2010

“Complete And Utter Chaos!”  - Eyewitness

Update: According to a Red Cross official, Haiti’s devastating earthquake has left an estimated 3 million people in need of emergency aid. Much of the world is putting aside political differences and rushing to help. Countries pledging their immediate support in terms of personnel, cash and supplies to Haiti include the United States, Iceland, Britain, France, Canada, Germany, China, Mexico and Venezuela. 

The Face Of Haiti - Source: AP

Once again, natural disaster has brought its wrath to Planet Earth; this time it is Haiti that must bear the brunt of nature’s fury. An earthquake registering 7.0+ on the Richter scale has devastated the tiny Caribbean country. Once again, America’s heart opens to the victims. We will respond as we always do: with compassion and utter disregard for politics.

As demonstrated by the diverse countries responding, this is no time for politics. These are innocent people who are suffering now.  Children, babies. Parents, the elderly. Hospitals and clinics where they might seek medical treatment have vanished into the debris.

The call has gone out to the world for help. As is usually the case in times of turmoil, America will lead the way in aid to Haiti. And President Obama has stepped up to pledge assistance from the American Government.

Still, it is often the private sector from which much of the aid comes. We are Americans… it’s what we do.

If you’re asking, “How can I help?” the following is a list of various organizations whose charters are to provide aid and comfort. I would advise you to look at each one before determining, for yourself which organization is likely to have the most direct impact on the people in Haiti who can only turn to the outside world in this time of utter need.

Click on the following links for more information on each organization:

International Medical Corps
Direct Relief International
World Vision
International Relief Teams
Yéle Haiti
American Red Cross
Operation USA
CARE
Catholic Relief Services
World Food Programme
World Concern
Save the Children
UNICEF USA

List source: CNN.com

Keep the people of Haiti in your thoughts and prayers in this time of need and desperation.

Gerry Ashley


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