With the occasional exception, I haven’t used this space to promote an ongoing charitable effort my household has undertaken since the most recent U.S. Presidential election. This month, however, I want to put these words wherever I can. The following information originally appeared on the Tumblr page established for our personal campaign to counter the regular abominations of the federal government.
On the 9th of every month, the anniversary of the morning after the 2016 election, we will donate to an organization engaged in the hard work of standing against and undoing the damage of the presidency a minority of voters put into place. In tribute to Hillary Clinton’s greater share of the popular vote, we will donate $48.20 to the organization in question and invite others to join us in doing the same. The original post that explains it all is here.
(Image via CBS News)
We are closing in on a year of this endeavor of putting our money where outrage is. More specifically, our household looked at the rhetoric of those moving into the U.S. Executive branch — and the predominating experience of those being given high-ranking positions — and determined that the federal government was about to slide into a period of colossal ineffectiveness. And that was the most generous projection.
Even beginning with that grim prediction, the regular procession of ineptitude has been astounding, especially when it has been coupled with a lack of basic empathy that borders on the inhuman. How can someone in a major leadership position view once-in-a-lifetime natural disaster devastation brought down upon U.S. citizens and emerge mostly chagrined that they as an individual aren’t getting enough credit for associated relief efforts? How can someone be so utterly lacking in humility that they follow a meeting with people who have lost everything by being sure to assert, “And also when I walked in the cheering was incredible.”
Hurricane Maria made landfall on Puerto Rico on September 20th. As of October 7th — nearly three weeks later — approximately 90 percent of the population was still without electricity, and over half the citizenry did not have ready access to drinking water. Puerto Rican officials have felt the need to literally plead for assistance through any forum available to them, largely to churlish indifference from the federal government. Just today, the governor of Puerto Rico — a U.S. territory where everyone is a full-fledged citizen of the “most powerful nation in the world” — wrote to Congressional leaders, noting a mounting inability of their “central and municipal governments to meet basic human needs.”
This is not — it should go without saying, writing, or implying — how things are supposed to work. It goes beyond the strained, unwieldy, insufficient response to Hurricane Katrina’s leveling of New Orleans. This is callous abdication of one of the federal government’s most fundamental roles, perpetrated by brutish figures who perversely can’t stop patting themselves on the back for their imagined genius and heroism.
According to their website, ConPRmetidos is “an independent, non-partisan and non-profit organization operating from San Juan, Puerto Rico since 2012″ with a stated mission of “connecting people to foster commitment with the personal, social, and economic development of the Puerto Rican communities.”
Under the current circumstances, ConPRmetidos has understandably shifted its focus somewhat. The organization has established the “Maria: Puerto Rico Real-Time Recovery Fund,” promising that every dime donated will go to providing long-term relief in the U.S. territory. As of right now, the organization lays out their priorities thusly:
We are currently financing (1) needs assessment efforts, (2) long-term structural repairs to the most vulnerable communities, and (3) power as a service.
There are a multitude of tremendous organizations responding to the needs of Puerto Rico with comprehensive, generous efforts. To our eyes, ConPRmetidos is approaching the enormous task ahead with a admirable balance of addressing immediate and long-term needs.
That’s why we’re giving the ConPRmetidos Maria: Puerto Rico Real-Time Recovery Fund our October 2017 donation of $48.20.
If you have the means, we humbly ask that you join us in doing so. DONATIONS CAN BE MADE AT THE GENEROSITY.COM WEBSITE ESTABLISHED BY CONPRMETIDOS FOR THIS EFFORT.