Opinion

Staff Editorial: Chile needs our philanthropy

The earthquake that hit Chile Feb. 27 rocked the scales at an 8.8. This earthquake shortened the day by 1.26 microseconds by shifting the earth’s axis.

It has received much less attention on our campus, however, than the recent catastrophic earthquake in Haiti, which registered at a 7.0 on the Richter scale.

There are some obvious reasons for this discrepancy. First, Chile is economically stronger than Haiti and its buildings are made with earthquakes in mind because Chile has had a history of earthquakes. In the 1960s, they were hit by the strongest earthquake ever recorded at a 9.5.

Consequently, the damage was not as extreme as it was in Haiti.

Also, proximity is an issue. Haiti is much closer to our campus than Chile.

But they still need aid in Chile; earlier this week the Chilean government reversed their decision and has asked for international help. Among their requests were generators, water filtration equipment and field hospitals.

Since ways of aiding the victims in Chile are not as obvious, here are some suggestions from The Miami Herald.

Go to charitynavigator.org or guidestar.org, both Web sites that rate U.S. charities and nonprofits. They also classify charities, which simplifies giving to a cause of your choice. Look for donation services with smaller overhead costs.

Money is more useful in these situations than supplies; relief workers can purchase what they need closer to the site instead of transporting supplies there.

Therefore, we urge students to show the same demonstration of charity they have exhibited toward Haiti to Chile. Keep in mind philanthropy is not something that is done out of convenience, it is an act that is done as needs arise.

Editorials represent the majority view of The Miami Hurricane editorial staff.


March 7, 2010

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