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  #1  
Old 26 April 2013, 01:26 PM
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Default Disaster donations: Texas lags way behind Boston

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More than $26 million has been raised in the wake of April 15 Boston blasts. And it appears that donations for West total well under $1 million.
Quote:
Ethan Austin, co-founder and president of GiveForward, said the discrepancy between fundraising efforts for Boston and West likely has a lot to do with the differing emotions behind the giving.

"The explosion in Texas was an accident. The reaction was sadness. The bombings in Boston were a heinous and malicious act that brought back memories of 9/11. The reaction was anger," he said. "Stories inspiring high energy emotions like anger have a much higher likelihood of going viral. Stories inspiring low-energy emotions like sadness do not tend to go viral."
http://money.cnn.com/2013/04/26/pf/t...ons/index.html

I know, personally, I haven't been paying much attention to West Texas. I guess I'll have to remedy that.
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  #2  
Old 26 April 2013, 05:52 PM
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They had a mass memorial service for 14 volunteer fire fighters yesterday. I couldn't watch.

Yes there was damage & loss of life in Boston but many more people lost their homes in West.
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  #3  
Old 26 April 2013, 06:51 PM
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Glasses

I think it may also have to do with the fact that Boston hit the news first. Some people will have given to Boston and been unable to do the same to Texas.

Seaboe
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Old 26 April 2013, 07:22 PM
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But I thought the reason we don't need government is that private citizens will give their own charity as needed? Surely that should be the case in West Texas? Where are all the private citizens and churches turning up with their donations?

Sorry, I feel trashy for saying that, even, but the whole "no government funds all private charity" argument strikes me as especially ironic in this scenario.
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  #5  
Old 26 April 2013, 08:17 PM
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I keep thinking that in Texas as least, there is a potential for victims to get compensation from the company that owns the fertilizer plant. It may be a slow process (lawsuits and appeals), but the source of that explosion is a legal entity that makes effort to stay legal*.

The people in Boston, however, are obviously not going to get much from the bombers.

Overall, though, I was annoyed at the lopsided coverage. The bombs were big news, no doubt. But the fertilizer explosion devastated an entire town and most of its emergency responders. I'm not sure, but this might be the deadliest event for firefighters since 9-11. It also tells us about the effectiveness of our current corporate oversight and work safety laws.

We have had terrorism before, we have an idea of how to deal with it, and it causes few deaths within our own borders. However, we still have an unacceptable level of industrial accidents and contamination events. The tragedy in Texas should prompt a legal review and legislative action that would have a greater effect on the nation than the response to the Boston bombing. But it won't, because it is easier to scare people with terrorism than with stuff that makes the grass greener.


(*They may not have been making enough effort to do everything legally, we might find out as the investigation continues/)
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  #6  
Old 26 April 2013, 08:22 PM
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As far as news coverage goes, what happened in Boston was a crime. Much of the news coverage has also been about identifying, catching, and pressing charges on the suspects. With Texas it was an unfortunate accident. There may not be much more anyone can say about unless there are some long term environmental factors or,more than likely, the family members make a wrongful death suit claim against the owners for violating safety regulations.

Now as for sympathy, donations, etc, I really don't care much for the idea of turning the two tragedies into a competition to see who suffered the most. It's not a contest. Certainly the hospitals don't. Two areas in the United States suffered from calamitous explosions, within the same week, there were several deathes and injuries. No one location can or should lay claim on who suffered the most. People suffered in both places. Period, end of sentence. That's all anyone needs to know.
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  #7  
Old 26 April 2013, 08:23 PM
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According to our local news (as this pretty much is a local story) it is the greatest loss of first responders since 9/11.
But they were probably just a bunch of Tea Party rednecks so why should anyone care about them? (Yes, that was dripping sarcasm).
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  #8  
Old 26 April 2013, 08:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crescent View Post
I keep thinking that in Texas as least, there is a potential for victims to get compensation from the company that owns the fertilizer plant. It may be a slow process (lawsuits and appeals), but the source of that explosion is a legal entity that makes effort to stay legal*.
This was not a large corporation. Rather, this was a small home town owned company who has since lost most of its assets. The owner may be worth a few million, but that won't be enough to make everyone whole again.
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Old 26 April 2013, 09:07 PM
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Ah, I had not caught that. Thanks Richard. That kind of emphasizes the need for donations down there.
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  #10  
Old 26 April 2013, 09:10 PM
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As Richard said, there's probably not going to be nearly enough money from the owners. I know there's a lot of demonization of business owners but these owners more than likely knew every single family that has been affected. They've sat by them at school functions, waved at them in the grocery store & talked to them at Friday night football games. There's no faceless corporation.
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  #11  
Old 26 April 2013, 09:25 PM
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Terroristic actions usually bring more attention and support then industrial accidents (unless you listen to the tinfoil hat brigade) sadly. There should also be some kind of aid coming in for the families of the fallen firefighters from different groups within the fire service such as the IAFF and others. If no one else will, we always try to take care of our own.
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  #12  
Old 26 April 2013, 09:38 PM
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Firefighter_raven: This may be a stupid question but even if they're volunteer? They migh have not been affiliated with certain organizations like career first responders.
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  #13  
Old 26 April 2013, 10:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Auburn Red View Post
As far as news coverage goes, what happened in Boston was a crime. [ . . .] With Texas it was an unfortunate accident.
I expect it was an accident in the sense that most likely nobody deliberately meant to blow up the town. (I don't know whether they'll ever manage to sift the cause of either the fire or the explosion out of what's left of the place; but, last I heard, they haven't done it yet.)

However, if, as has been reported, the plant in Texas had misrepresented its stock to safety authorities, then crimes may well have been committed legally. Even if there's no legal crime, it's unlikely that what happened was an "accident" in the sense of "something happened that wasn't anybody's fault". Somebody was deciding what to produce in that location; somebody was deciding, or failing to decide, what other uses should be allowed or encouraged in the immediate area (based most likely at least in part on information put out by the plant); somebody was deciding what safety procedures to follow, or not to follow; somebody was deciding, if reports are correct, to report to authorities that there was no risk of explosion.
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  #14  
Old 26 April 2013, 11:59 PM
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And all this was happening in a small town where everybody knew each other.
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  #15  
Old 27 April 2013, 12:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morgaine View Post
Firefighter_raven: This may be a stupid question but even if they're volunteer? They migh have not been affiliated with certain organizations like career first responders.
Doesn't matter. They may not have been paid but they were family as far as we are concerned. Wildland or structural, paid or volunteer- we may give each other flak about who is better etc but in the end we all know the price that might have to be paid someday to do the job we all love.
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  #16  
Old 27 April 2013, 12:42 AM
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I wish we had a "Like" button.
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  #17  
Old 27 April 2013, 01:37 PM
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And as a further followup to your question Morgaine, this popped up on a local news feed.
http://www.katu.com/news/local/Honor...204974111.html

Quote:
A few days after the explosion in Texas, firefighters there sent a simple Facebook message to firefighters in Oregon. They were strangers but they needed help honoring 12 Texas men who died.

Two firefighters arrived back home to Portland on Friday after spending a week helping the families of their fellow firefighters killed in that fertilizer plant explosion.

After the first wave of firefighters rushed to the burning plant just in time for the huge explosion last week that took their lives, the second wave of firefighters rushed to the plant this week.

Instead of hoses, they carried flags to serve in the honor guard. The honor guard is a volunteer corps that stands guard over the caskets of the fallen. Oregon proudly sent two – their long journey sewn onto the sleeves of Phil Burks’ and Raina Eshleman's uniforms.
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  #18  
Old 27 April 2013, 03:27 PM
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I think the reason is that the Texas explosion was an accident, while the Boston bombing was a deliberate act. People seem far more motivated to do something about disasters when they have someone to blame for it. Cracked has a good article on it.
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  #19  
Old 27 April 2013, 03:36 PM
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Well the plant was owned by a family so there are evil business owners to put anger towards. I'm really surprised we haven't heard more about them. Their name should be a matter of public record & everyone in the town could probably tell you who owned the plant.

firefighter_raven: That's wonderful to hear. I know one family lost 2 adult sons. I still can't bring myself to read too much as it just hits too close to home.
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  #20  
Old 27 April 2013, 03:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morgaine View Post
Well the plant was owned by a family so there are evil business owners to put anger towards. I'm really surprised we haven't heard more about them. Their name should be a matter of public record & everyone in the town could probably tell you who owned the plant.

But blaming job-creators would be SOCIALISM, and you CERTAINLY don't want that!
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