Haitian Earthquake vs. The Quake of ’89

Over the weekend, Tina and I spent Saturday night in New Buffalo, MI. It’s right over the Indiana border on Lake Michigan.

Our friends Mike and Angie had a coupon for a one-night stay at a small resort. We met them and their two kids, Marty and Norah, for a day and a half of sledding, swimming, Wii’ing, and having an all ’round good time.

It was a nice opportunity for a little R&R.

Of course the topic of the earthquake came up. At one point, Mike said, “Did you know that the earthquake in San Francisco was also a 7.0 earthquake (just like Haiti), and only about 70 people died?”

Links for wikis: Haiti & San Francisco.

I didn’t make the correlation immediately. But after we were talking, he made reference to the stereotypical San Francisco and its dominance of a liberal homosexual population. In light of the Pat Robertson ridiculous (and biblically spot-0n) statement, it seems like god likes homosexuals and liberals better than he likes poor islanders who were once enslaved by the French.

I mean, death toll side by side, Haiti’s latest approximation is over 200,000. San Francisco was under a hundred. Injury numbers aren’t even remotely close. Damage to infrastructure, expensive but manageable in San Fran. Haiti is pretty much wiped out.

While Mike, Angie and Tina were talking about the awful Robertson, all I could think of was science. California is known to sit on a tectonic fault line. Engineers have long been used to build in California with the understanding that a quake could hit anywhere at any time.

When I think of liberals, I think of lovers of science and reason. They test to falsify ideas on many levels to arrive at a solution that takes place in realistic terms. There’s no way to measure the correlation of life-style choices that might or might not spark the anger of an invisible being in the sky.

What it boils down to is this: Haiti is poor, and her inability to support an infrastructure to support such a catastrophe is blatantly obvious.

With science, there is a greater chance of salvation. With reason, there are advancements to infrastructure, to medicine, to life. Without it, nature and the elements are fiercer and even more indifferent than the universe already is.

Attempts at Rational Behavior Julie blogged about Chris Hitchens’ response to the religious tomfoolery. A lot of us godless bloggers have hit this topic hard.

Tina and I donated to the Red Cross the day after the hit, and we’re hoping to collect more cash to donate as soon as we can.

Atheists have been organizing as much donations as we can muster, which shows a great positive push. PZ covers the topic of organized godless giving here. At the time of writing, donations topped $150,000 and that was a few days after almost all the blogs I was reading were calling for donations.


Regular reader Renee Hendricks sent me a note with a list of donation centers to consider. I’m leaving her comment as well as posting the list with links here:

Consider a few other charitable organizations as well (for you and readers):

Doctors Without Borders: http://doctorswithoutborders.org

Non-believers Giving Aid: http://givingaid.richarddawkins.net/

Long term help – Mokugift, reforestation of Haiti: http://www.mokugift.com/island/renee12

Thanks, Renee!

4 thoughts on “Haitian Earthquake vs. The Quake of ’89

      1. Fabulous! I’ve come across the first two in my constant vigilance over new stories emerging regarding this tragedy. The last one (Mokugift) I’ve been a part of for a while now. http://ff.im/eqBTQ will show how bad the ecological situation is in Haiti.

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