This was a post I started yesterday, but never actually finished. The death toll was at 44,000.
The recent earthquake and resulting chaos is mind-boggling. I mean, a tsunami? That’s the stuff that ancient myths are made of. I’m having a hard time imagining how large of a crowd 44,000 people is, and that’s the death toll so far. I did some googling to get an idea of how many people 44,000 is. It’s a hell of a lot. (search for 44,000 on these pages if you don’t see it right away)
It’s how many people showed up at a George W. Bush rally in Arizona
It’s how many people voted early in Georgia
It’s how many seats planned for the new Fenway Park stadium in Boston
It’s how many seats are in the new Comisky Park stadium in Chicago
It’s how many people went to see Bruce Springsteen in Finland
It’s how many NSync tickets went on sale in El Paso
It’s how many people die in highway accidents in a year
It’s how many people were expected to pass through Syndey’s airport on their way home from the Olympics
It’s how many people live in the city of San Luis Obispo, California
It’s how many people live in the city of Auburn, Alabama
It’s how many students there are in the Calgary Catholic School district
It’s how many students enrolled in Michigan State University
It’s how many students enrolled in Texas A&M
The death toll as of this morning is at 76,700 and I haven’t the heart to even try to fathom it. I want to say “How awful” or “It’s so tragic”, but words like awful and tragic don’t begin to describe the jaw-dropping magnitude. I think this is one of those times when only a visceral reaction accompanied by some indescribable noise from the back of your throat will suffice. It makes one acutely aware that in the end, despite borders and nations and ideologies, we’re all earthlings and live on this rock together. We see the same stars, the same moon, we breathe the same air, and are all subject to our planet’s shifting, shaping, rumbling, moving and changing. It’s downright humbling to know that we live on the Earth’s back on its terms.
Here is a list of organizations accepting monetary donations that I found on CNN’s website. Please do what you can to help your fellow earthlings.