Thursday, January 06, 2005

We were more generous when we were less rich, many of the rich countries. And it is beyond me, why are we so stingy, really ... Even Christmas time should remind many Western countries at least how rich we have become.

That's what Jan Engeland actually said about the stinginess of wealthy nations. I'm posting it here because it was shockingly hard to find the actual quote. What is WRONG with our media?

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

From the Financial Times, Excess Tsunami Donations Pose Challenge to UN

What happened in South Asia is devastating. But if any good can comes out of the wretched situation, it will be the awareness that there is a whole big world out there, and a lot of people who need help. So please oh please take a minute and read the article above and if you want to donate money, consider doing it to help people who aren't in the headlines.

I want to know why this particular disaster has affected people so deeply, when we ignore so much horror every day. If you have any insight, I'd really like to know what you think.

Some more articles:

From the Washington Post, Haphazard Charity

"It's hard to avoid marveling at the haphazard pattern of global empathy. Around the world, disasters that cut short hundreds of thousands of lives unfold constantly -- malaria kills 1 million people a year, AIDS kills about 3 million and the current genocide in Darfur has claimed perhaps 300,000 lives so far. Moreover, the tsunami is not the sort of disaster for which outside help is most crucial."

From CNN, The Class System of Catastrophe.

"As many as 3 million impoverished children will die this year of malaria, although easy prevention (bed nets to ward off mosquitoes) and treatments (antimalarial drugs) exist to save those children.

Tens of millions of Bangladeshi citizens are being poisoned daily by drinking well water that is laden with natural arsenic, yet the rich world has not seen fit to help resolve this long-recognized crisis. And the list goes on."

From The New York Times, "Giving for a Cause, and That Cause Only"

"Last Wednesday, Doctors Without Borders posted a message on its Web site telling donors that it had collected as much as it would need to play its role in this disaster and inviting them to donate to its efforts in other places, including Sudan and Iraq. The organization collected more than $50 million to aid victims of the tsunami, and it was one of the first groups to express concern that the torrent of money flowing to southern Asia threatened to divert money from other needy locales"

Here's my illustration. It's just a disaster, because there are so damn many people out there who aren't getting any relief.