What is now Tropical Storm Florence continues to dominate the news this Saturday. Firing up the computer (which is the only place I keep Facebook these days), I’m immediately hit with a plea from “FB” from the American Red Cross to donate to Florence victims.
Let me tell you a little story from my father, who died in 1991 – and a fable that has been relayed by him through my mother and to me through the intervening years.
As a young man, my dad was in the Army in the years that followed World War II. After defeating the Germans and the Japanese in that war, the military thought it would be a good idea to be tactically superior in snowy terrain – so my father was part of that effort, training in Colorado’s mountainous areas. Around that time, he would encounter the American Red Cross frequently. They always had coffee and snacks at the ready – provided, as my father relayed, the soldiers could pay what he thought was a steep price for those times.
It doesn’t surprise me, and hasn’t in a long time, that whenever there’s a disaster in the United States, you frequently hear of criticism of the Red Cross. True, the need will always be there for donations – but the story that isn’t often told, often because of how the media sets these stories up, is how the money they receive from us is distributed to victims. Do they get what they need, or does the ARC play them off as suckers?
A question to ponder in the days ahead, as the Carolinas recover.