In Praise of Our Global Community

In my January 6 post titled “Let’s Just Focus on Love,” I wrote about a woman who was discovered under a pile of rubble six days after an earthquake hit Haiti.  Despite the best efforts of her husband and others to dig her out of the collapsed building, they were unable to do so because the necessary machinery was unavailable.   Fortunately firefighters from Los Angeles showed up with the proper equipment and were able to reunite Jeanette with her beloved husband.  Yea USA!!!

When I originally read that story in the newspaper I couldn’t help but feel national pride.  I also couldn’t help but feel proud of the world community’s response to this devastated island estimated to have lost over 300,000 people.   Nations of various sizes quickly mobilized and departed for Haiti or sent money. They offered food and water, financial assistance, supplies, etc.  It was heartwarming to see countries serve as global villagers on a mission to help other villagers who didn’t even share their language, customs or features.  The wonderful thing about this is that it’s not unusual.  Hurricane Katrina, the tsunami in South Asia, the earthquake in Japan are just a few examples.

Haiti’s neighbor, the Dominican Republic, immediately sent food and bottled water and heavy machinery to clear the rubble.  Hospitals were made available, Dominicans distributed aid that arrived via their airport, the country sent a team to help restore phone service, and they set up donation centers, among other things.

Smaller nations with limited resources pitched in to help as well. Haiti’s 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit on Tuesday.  On Wednesday the Search and Rescue Team from Iceland was preparing to transport tons of rescue equipment and water to that island, and on Thursday the team rescued three women from the ruins of a building in Port-au-Prince. Other smaller countries made sizable contributions, per capita, as well.  They include: Chad $50,000 Mauritius $500,000, Cambodia $60,000 and the list goes on.  The large number of private donations from around the globe was astounding.  We Are The World!

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