So Mrs. Blue and I go to a diner for breakfast this morning. An old boxcar diner, where there isn’t much distance between you and the other folks, and you get quite the cross-section of humanity dispersed among 10 or so rotating stools.
At the end of the boxcar, Man A says, “So, how much are we sending to Haiti now to help them?”
Man B: “Hundred million, I guess.”
Man A: “One hundred million dollars to help Haiti? Great. Like they were there for us helping after 9/11.”
This logic just floored me, on several levels.
First off, what aid was Haiti, one of the poorest nations on Earth, going to give us after terrrorists took down the World Trade Center twin towers? They don’t have money. Oh, maybe they could send in their vast numbers of med-evac helicopters and transport injured New Yorkers to their top-notch Haitian medical facilities?
Second, how exactly can we scoff at their current tragedy and try to even compare it to 9/11? Less than 5,000 people, if I recall, died in that terrorist attack. This earthquake took out more than ten times that number of people in Haiti. The 9/11 attack happened in a nation with great emergency response, and while there was dust and other ill effects for months thereafter, at least we didn’t have to worry about dead bodies rotting in the streets all across the city because there were not enough people or infrastructure to cart them away.
Haitians, already forced to live in poverty thanks to how we and other nations have butt-fucked them for years, including we here in the U.S. propping up corrupt regimes there, now have the threat of disease on top of everything else, and the stench of death literally hanging in the air.
I’m not saying that we can help the entire world, but it seems like we have all sorts of willingness to, say, help out nice looking Asiatic folks when a typhoon or tsunami strikes, because we might vacation there one day. But no one vacations in Haiti.
And we throw open the doors for white or very pale tanned Cubans when they make it to our shores, but we turn the Haitians away and make them row back sometimes in their own rickety boats.
Let’s let 50,000 dead go untended, and leave the multitude of others, injured or perhaps close to death themselves, just be damned because they aren’t pretty enough for us. Because they’re too poor to be bothered with.
Or maybe because you’re stupid enough to believe Pat Robertson when he tells you their suffering is because of pact with the devil made centuries ago to free themselves from the French. No matter that Pat totally got his history wrong and didn’t even know who was controlling them. No matter that it essentially suggests that one of the most successful slave revolts in history couldn’t possibly have succeeded with the help of Satan because they’re just a bunch of stupid Negros and always have been.
Yeah, let’s dehumanize them some more.
Not only are they trash, but they’re also just this side of being demons, right?
If that’s what you believe, and if you can turn a blind eye to suffering so close to our own borders, in a nation we messed up (and in very recent history, I might add), then shame on you. Because you don’t have the love of anyone in your heart, then, certainly not the light of Jesus.