Updated: Feb 12
Most of us are accustomed, maybe even inured, to seeing earthquake damage in distant countries and telling ourselves—oh well, poor construction, shoddy building techniques, shacks, hovels, and corruption.
The recent photos from the earthquake this past week should make us all reconsider some of those beliefs. These are not tents that have fallen over or shacks cobbled together with cardboard and foil. In a city of 400,000, high-rise apartment buildings have collapsed on themselves, and even taller buildings have actually toppled over, such was the magnitude of the quake.
And then there are the people. When you begin counting the dead in the tens of thousands, it should make everyone stand up and take notice. And help. The earthquake in Haiti (2010) and the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami killed more as of today, but this particular disaster is being compounded by the weather during the rescue efforts. Those who survived the initial quake and aftershocks are now dying from exposure. Under optimal circumstances, victims trapped in the rubble might be found alive; but the cold and snow are shattering even that possibility while aid workers are laboring as well as they can under dismal and heartbreaking conditions.
We can help. Obviously, not everyone in the world can afford to contribute, but if even one in ten Americans contributed $25.00 (about the price of a good large pizza these days—or if your taste runs in other directions, a very decent Cabernet) that $75 million dollars could buy a lot of clothing and shelter. (Even the cost of a bad small pizza or a bottle of Boone's Farm would help.)
So do your due diligence and find a charity that does what a charity should do—get aid to the people who need it. Charity Watch can help you find one of the good ones if you don't have a favorite.
We do have our share of problems in this country, and we're right to complain about the price of eggs and gasoline, the threat of Chinese balloons, and the general existence of something called George Santos. But the photos and videos from Turkey and Syria make those complaints seem pretty benign.
If you can help, do so. You'll feel better about yourself, and the brain cells that would have died from that bottle of Boone's Farm will benefit you in the long run.