Thursday, February 7, 2008

Don't Give To The Red Cross

If you want to donate to the tornado survivors in Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi, Alabama and Arkansas, a better bet would be to make your donation to the Salvation Army. Links to that organization along with other info can be found in this diary.

Because the Red Cross is actually an organization which, per a commenter under the above-mentioned diary,

is thoroughly politicized, the Bush hacks who aren't competent enough for government work are corralled there.

There are too many worthy charities to waste money on that quasi-governmental mess.

by lgcap

What has gotten me riled up about this topic was reading about the Red Cross in remarks under that tornado diary and remembering how, when I used to post under another blog, one of the commenters who's a physician said that as a Red Cross volunteer he'd wanted to go into New Orleans after the flood and had been told at the time that he couldn't--the city was too dangerous.

This didn't make sense to me--I mean, aren't places where disasters have happened usually dangerous in some way or another? But the Red Cross' reasoning comes to light in this following remark, also under the above-linked diary:

I'm sorry, but Red Cross... an organization permanently lost me for their support after their horrendous performance during Katrina in New Orleans and their "buy in" to the whole racist theme that the city was too dangerous to enter and that rendering help would mean residents wouldn't be evacuated....even as 10s of thousands were suffering and in need. There was no excuse for that.... That was really F'ckd up.

by LakeSuperior

And it's not just anonymous Daily Kos bloggers who say something's "F'ckd up" in the Red Cross--here's more:

While many were outraged that the Red Cross failed to enter New Orleans, unsafe conditions and reports of shootings and lootings may have informed the decision. The Red Cross is not chartered to conduct search and rescue operations.

We "will not put [our] own workers in harm's way," Red Cross spokesperson Renita Hosler told RAW STORY.

Hosler explained that the Red Cross was "at the table" with "Emergency Management" numerous times while conditions deteriorated in New Orleans and that a decision was reached that if the group set up shop within the city, it might encourage others to come back, creating a secondary crisis.

Hosler confirmed that authorities turned down repeated offers by the Red Cross to enter New Orleans with supplies. New Orleans, she asserted, was considered too unsafe for the Red Cross to enter.

The article also says that the Red Cross,

although mandated by its Code of Conduct to remain independent of government, is officially part of the Bush Administration's national security apparatus.

Hmmm. This means that the Red Cross, at the time New Orleans flooded had been, instead of the helpful, rescuing charity its proponents paint it as being, a partner in crime with a BushCo which had been imposing its Final Solution in Louisiana. This makes the Red Cross, like BushCo, is guilty of genocide--standing idly by as poor people in Louisiana drowned.

And it was also mentioned under the tornado diary how the Red Cross' response to the wildfires in California had been good and that its being under new management could be the reason. Maybe so--but then, maybe that area of California doesn't have a large concentration of poor people of color that BushCo wanted to ethnically cleanse.

Back to Louisiana--there should be some way bereaved families, knowing that the Red Cross' inaction had contributed to the loss of their loved ones, could institute legal action against that organization--and I don't mean by merely filing a lawsuit. That would be too kind. Instead, those responsible for the Red Cross' decision not to go into New Orleans should be charged with murder.

Where's Mark Geragos when you need him?

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Midwest lover of New Orleans and of all things having to do with Louisiana.