I’m struggling to understand what’s happened to our collective conscious. Last Friday, arguably the a most severe typhoon in recorded history hit the Philippines and caused massive destruction with wind-speeds of 200 mph upon landfall. On Monday there were reports of as many as 10,000 dead in a single city. Images of dead floating in the streets were widespread on-line. It was clear that the typhoon had devastated the area and that people needed help.
And it’s as if the world stood still.
I saw virtually nothing in my social media streams. With the exceptions of some NGOs like the Red Cross and Environmental organizations, it was as if nothing happened. In the past, social media has exploded with appeals for ways to help. I think back over the last two years about some of the major disasters including Fukashima, Hurricane Sandy, the Boston Marathon attacks. All of them seemed to stir my social media streams with concern. But not this time.
Is it because we are too busy? I don’t think so. We’re no more busy than we were a last year when Sandy hit the East Coast.
Is it because this happened in a far off land? Again, I don’t think so, we responded to the disasters in Fukashima and to the Tsunami in 2004.
Is it because we have grown callous as a society? I certainly doubt it.
Is it because we’ve come to accept these things as the new normal? I hope that I get proven wrong, but I have a growing sense that it is exactly that we are starting to accept huge storms and their inevitable consequences as purely a fact of life.
Please, Donate to the Red Cross or to another charity that supports international relief efforts. And while you’re at it, lobby your congressman to address climate change in a meaningful way. Nothing will change unless we make it change.