I don’t like to speak in 3rd person, but Sistah is angry. I’ve been waiting and watching. I’ve been monitoring Social Media to see what course of action is being taken to help minimize this emergency. Sadly, I haven’t seen enough. True, I’ve read a few posts on FB expressing outrage and heartbreak, but most are forwarded news stories articulating the sentiments of others.
I’m talking about the water crisis in Flint, Michigan.
I’m not sure if you are aware, but a city in the United States of America has been systematically poisoned by its water supply since April 2014 when the state-appointed Emergency Financial Manager, Darnell Earley, decided to sever ties with the Detroit water system and switch the water source to the Flint River without proper testing.
Cost savings: $100/day.
Almost immediately, citizens began complaining of the rancid smell, discoloration, skin rashes and tile rot (yes, tile rot). Yet, the city did nothing. Well, let me take that back, in January 2015, fresh bottled water was provided to the state building in Flint when employees complained. The Governor, Rick Snyder, said he had no knowledge of this but stood by his proclamation that the city water was indeed safe to drink.
In September 2015, independent investigations conducted by concerned physicians revealed the cause of the multiple E Coli outbreaks, Legionnaire’s Disease and significant increase in lead levels in the infant population. October 2015, Governor Snyder switches the water supply back to Detroit. However, it is estimated that it will take at least 6 months before that water is even remotely safe for drinking. Still, the damage has been done.
The population of Flint is just shy of 100,000 residents, majority African American, about 44% living below the poverty level. Many of the homes have lead levels so high, the supplied filtration systems don’t even work. Children have irreversible brain damage. Older children are losing their permanent teeth to rot and many residents are losing their hair. Various diagnoses are poisoning from lead, copper, aluminum and chromium. Brittle bones, low white blood cell count, loss of memory and trouble with concentration. We teach our children to drink water instead of soda or juice, right? What happens when the water is killing them?
PSA’s have been sent to advise residents that it is OKAY to bathe in tap water, as long as you don’t get it in your mouth. Ever bathe a baby?
So far, only a handful of people involved have resigned or been fired. No one, to date, has been charged with a crime. We’ve seen this time and again. A certain Hurricane Katrina comes to mind.
Where’s your outrage? Are you sitting your behind up in church every Sunday and professing to love your neighbor, but only paying “lip service”? Our fellow citizens need aid, not feeble commentary in passing. Get up off your righteous butt and start a water drive or donate to one of many organizations at Ground Zero that can get clean, safe water directly to Flint residents. I don’t want to see another Bible quote, verse or inspirational mumbo jumbo post until you can confidently say that you are really making a difference in the life of someone else.
To make it easy for you, here is a link to help you donate: