13 January 2010


After all that Haiti has been through — political turmoil, poverty, disease, and natural disasters of every kind — I wonder: if there is indeed a God, does he love that nation so much that he continually gathers its people abruptly by the hundreds and brings them to sit beside him? If so, what does he feel for those he leaves behind? I can’t help recalling the words of Mark Twain:
The best minds will tell you that when a man has begotten a child he is morally bound to tenderly care for it, protect it from hurt, shield it from disease, clothe it, feed it, bear with its waywardness, lay no hand upon it save in kindness and for its own good, and never in any case inflict upon it a wanton cruelty. God’s treatment of his earthly children, every day and every night, is the exact opposite of all that, yet those best minds warmly justify these crimes, condone them, excuse them, and indignantly refuse to regard them as crimes at all, when he commits them.
-- Letters from the Earth

But this isn’t the time for philosophy. My father, who in the course of his career witnessed the aftermath of many an earthquake, hurricane, fire, and flood, always praised the work of the American Red Cross. That organization is seeking funds now to help the people of Haiti. From within the U.S., you can text the word “HAITI” to the phone number 90999, and a donation of $10 will be given automatically to the Red Cross, charged to your cell phone bill. Or you can go online to the Red Cross website to make a contribution to the relief effort.

1 comment:

William V. Madison said...

Fortunately for us all, Pat Robertson has clarified Haiti’s plight. According to him, the earthquake, like all the other wrath visited on that country, is divine retribution for “a pact with the Devil,” entered into many generations ago, in order to free the Haitian people from slavery and the yoke of Napoleon III.

So you see, there is a God, albeit one who is vindictive toward innocent people and remarkably ignorant of 19th-century history. Let us pray.

And meanwhile, let us wonder with whom Robertson made his own little pact.