best and worst of human nature

Today marks the four year anniversary of 9/11.

The aftermath of hurricane Katrina will no doubt overshadow this. But, in a way, the events of the past two weeks remind us about the best parts of human nature.

I saw this story online this morning on the Dallas Morning News website.

Would-be volunteers left to wait

Now, even though the story really covers people complaining about being frustrated over not being able to help the victims of hurricane Katrina, the fact that there are more volunteers than the various help organizations know what to do with speak volumes. There are other stories about how literally millons of dollars of donations are flowing to the Red Cross. There are stories of people who have gone out of their way to help these people.

We as human beings are a unique species. We are able to perform both amazing acts of kindness as well as unspeakable acts of evil.

There’s no way most of us can possibly relate to what these people are going through. I can’t imagine anyone who has not been moved by the images of what has happened to these people over the last couple of weeks.

If you can afford to, please donate something, be it time or money or whatever these organizations need. I won’t post a link here because I honsetly don’t think you can hit a major web site right now ( google, cnn, amazon, etc) without seeing links for donations.

If you can, please also donate to the SPCA. I wish I had the link, but CNN had a sad photo essay of pets that were abandoned in New Orleans by their owners. With stories of hundreds of thousands of people being homeless, it’s easy to forget that a large number of these people had pets. Most were left behind, and some had to be given up when they arrived at shelters to find that there was simply no room for their pets. Animal shelters, much like the cities, are scrambling to find places to hold these animals.

Please ignore the politicians. Half of them are out there patting themselves on the back for a job well done or trying to make the most of a photo op with the victims. The other half are out there pointing fingers, trying to blame someone for the mess while trying to push their own agendas. Yes, even Jesse Jackson has reared his ugly head, looking for a bandwagon to jump on.

The only politician who I have to give kudos for is the one I can’t name. I believe he is the senate majority leader. He showed up on fox news a week ago, reluctantly, and really rather was not interested in giving an interview. He was a surgeon before going into politics, and he was there to help provide medical assistance as the military began moving people out.

Even the media has started their rants…

Media Rant

Did the government respond fast enough? Could they have done better? Probably. And, let’s be honest. As much as various groups will want to blame Bush for all of this, I seriously doubt that the federal govement would have responded any better regardless of who resided in the White House.

Ironically, in January, there was a lot of stories wondering whether or not the United States would be able to handle a natural disaster on the level of the tsunami that hit Thailand just before new years. Now we know…

But, there is still much to be done for the victims of the hurricane. There will be time later to do all the finger pointing you want.

As I’ve mentioned, the outpouring of help from everywhere for these people shows mankind at their best — showing compassion for their fellow man in their greatest time of need.

Today, of all days, though, we can not… we MUST not… forget the other side of human nature.. The evil side… The side in which 19 religious fanatics sought to attack the United States for no other reason than for the fact that it exists.

I stumbled across this site a few weeks ago. It’s a series of pictures taken from someone living in New Jersey who witnessed and photographed the collapse of the twin towers. The pictures speak for themselves…

9-11 pictures

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