Thursday, December 30, 2004

We bring a bucket to the conflaguration

The neighbor’s house burns down.

Do you wait three days before wandering over to check on the family? See how they are doing? Offer any help? Call friends and community organizations to organize assistance?

Of course not. And the President of the United States shouldn’t wait that long either.

We just witnessed the greatest natural disaster of this generation. Uncounted thousands killed. Unfathomable physical damage. Whole islands devastated. Populations totally uprooted. Massive disruption of social and civil institutions. Broken health and safety structures.

And the leader of the strongest, richest country in the world speaks publicly 72 hours after the disaster. And promises something more than the paltry $35 million we have pledged so far. As Senator Pat Leahy noted, we spend more than that in Iraq before breakfast. The European Union has collected more than that from street collections….

As a society, we must rise above such meager leadership. We are better than this.

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