Blogs and Opinions - "Viewer Mail," an icky way to end the year? Or a good way to start the New Year...
Well here's an interesting thing, considering that this is a technical blog.
Last week I wrote a post on how I was offended at CNN's posting of a picture of a white face on their home page when ~20,000 non-whites were dead (>120,000 now, likely 150,000 soon and one third were children). I felt, and still feel, that it was an ethnocentric decision by CNN.
Since, for whatever reason, CNN has posted more sensitive pictures, but not before they did two days of coverage on a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Model who survived and a whole story on celebrities affected. Certainly I wasn't the only one who noticed this, and a number of people mentioned it to me, both publically and privately. The Progressive Magazine did an article in the same vein as my post called "NYT says Tsunami Kills White People Too."
A U.S. government site has quote from President Bush about relief aid.
[For example], in the year 2004, our government provided $2.4 billion in food, in cash, in humanitarian relief to cover the disasters for last year. That's $2.4 billion. That's 40 percent of all the relief aid given in the world last year, was provided by the United States government. No, we're a very generous, kindhearted nation.
The interesting things are the $2.4B the government gave this year to humanitarian relief (it doesn't say if it include the Tsunami $350M), and the statement that it was 40% of all relief give in the world. It's good we gave more that any country in the world, considering that our GDP is nearly 11 MILLION MILLION dollars, almost double our nearest competitor, China, and almost greater than the entire rest of the top ten.
The government aid was originally $4M, then $35M on the third day (the same amount pledged by the Pzifer corporation alone) and today was upp'ed the amount of government-pledged aid to $350M. This number will likely change as the death toll rises. This is in comparison to the $13.6 Billion that has been pledged for Florida Hurricane relief. In another comparison, Bill Gates and his wife gave $168M last year to Malaria research alone and another $42M this year.
Anyway, I received this email today in criticism to my earlier post on CNN's ethnocentric news focus.
Shame on you. Americans pay attention to other Americans killed in disasters partly because it hits close to home, and reminds us of how those thousands of people over there feel. America is a very empathetic country.The Americans have given $350 million dollars to this disaster. How dare anyone criticize them. As for media, anyone with an IQ over 50 knows never to trust the opinions of the media.
For some reason, America is seemingly the most criticized nation as far as it's moral standards and supposed "self-centeredness" goes. However, America gives 40% of the world's disaster relief funds every year. America rushes to help, and immediately orchestrates organizations for rescue and help whenever something goes wrong...
When 9/11 happened, who rushed to their side? Not really anyone, at least no other country in a heroic way. Instead, the Americans themselves took charge, and they didn't give anyone else any grief at all for not giving enough. America isn't perfect, but they do a lot of good for this world.
America has good intentions, and have proven time and time again their selflessness. Anyone who continues to criticize despite this has issues, and needs a reality check.Either way, is your bitching about the wrong doings of American media helping this situation at all? No, but the American Red Cross is...You're a flippin' hypocrite- and I'm not even American. Lay off, you come off as an arrogant swine.[Heather Erickson-Sander]