Saturday, January 16, 2010

Pause. Let's talk about Haiti.

I'm doing this whole "Mr. Gannon Goes To D.C." shtick and it seems to be going pretty well. I'm having fun again, the readers are slowly (actually, less slowly than expected) learning I'm posting again and I'm having fun. All is well.

Still, it's 2:13 in the morning out here in Washington and I have to break format for a minute and talk about this Haiti situation. I know it's late and I know that in the grand scheme of things I don't have much to contribute. Still, it's been eating away at me for the past few days and culminated in the last hour after watching live footage of starving civilians fighting over boxes of food. As I sat in my comfortable hotel room, sipping from a cold beer, calm from taking a hot bath, this disturbed me.

There are a few things I have to say.

About five years ago I was on a family trip much similar to the one I'm on now. We weren't in Washington but Dublin, Ireland. I remember switching the television on and seeing breaking news about hurricane Katrina. The media over there is pretty frank and made things very clear: my country was in a terrible state and a shitload of people were dying, starving and on the verge of total breakdown.

I felt powerless. Being so far away from home and having to watch part of it crumble was terrible. When 9/11 made it's rounds I was too young to do anything. To this day I think of this and bite my lip, regretful of my circumstance. I wish there was something, anything I could do. Since then I think to myself often and remind myself that if my neighbors or fellow Americans ever need my help I will do something. Still, there wasn't much I could do. I was fifteen years old and stuck in Ireland. The view from afar was good (too good) and I watched everything. All from the comfort of a hotel room.

Tonight turning on the television and seeing Haiti crumble even further evoked similar feelings. To be honest, they weren't as strong and that's simply because I am not Haitian. I don't know anyone who is and couldn't even tell you the capital of the place (at least until the past couple of days rolled by). Even so, being away from home and seeing such a gruesome scene play out was strange. Being in Washington D.C. with the intention of going on a self-indulgent, patriotic buffet made things, well, a few parts awkward with a twist of guilt.

I'm honestly not sure where this post is going. All I do know is that it's important to note a few things before it wraps up.

It's a new decade and as far as I'm concerned, a damn late one. We have been around for two thousand and a few more years than I think we should have. You make my ass a caveman and throw me out in the wilderness and I'd croak before you could say "evolve."

Essentially what I'm saying is that it's amazing we have come this far and the end isn't clearly coming tomorrow or even next year.

We live in a time that carries a great deal of responsibility. It's hard to grasp but we as people, not Americans, need to help other people not as neighbors, but as people. Nations, very slowly, are beginning to mean less and less every day. The more we communicate, the more we spread, the less meaning borders have. We each have a duty as people who have made it two thousand and ten years into the unknown to do what we can for each other and help make it another two thousand.

I'm asking you as a friend:

If you believe in god, pray.

If you are rich, donate.

If you are like me and don't know what to do, hope.

That's close to nothing, but it's better than zilch.

Be well.

Blogmaster K-Dog.

1 comment:

Daniel said...

This video sealed the deal for me. My lord.
Only now do I really realize what's going on. If I was rich, boy, I really hope I'd donate mad mad bean. Who knows if I actually would...I just hope that I would.