Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Generosity - for emergency use only?
All of New Zealand is pulling together to help Christchurch out - yesterday was a massive aftershock from the quake they suffered in September, but much shallower and closer to the city, plus during the day. They are still not sure how many of the missing people are trapped or dead, but 75 bodies are already reported. A national emergency has been declared.
More than 8000 people have joined the Facebook page Student Volunteer Army.
Even here in Auckland, many miles away, we are being asked to help in many ways - even open our homes to people who have been suffering aftershocks for months and now have only tents to live in.
This is, to say the least, uplifting.
Ironically, the government is also today discussing a major review of welfare policy that would force beneficiaries who have health problems or small children to compete in an employment market where the fit and well are going jobless. This is to address a perceived problem of growing dependency on benefits.
If only generosity were not so carefully saved for emergencies.