Wow, where to even begin…
Readers of my blog may not be aware of what level of Japanophile I really am, but, well, let’s just say I keep track of what’s going on over there better than the average American. Many of art and movie trends, especially in animation and comics and science-fiction in general, end up being a pretty big influence over here. Fashion, too, actually, and in ways most of us aren’t even aware of most of the time.
So, with that in mind, when I saw a couple of my contacts over there in Tokyo talking about the earthquake, tsunami and general devastation on Twitter and Facebook this past Friday morning, I was concerned. As news media started to pick up the stories, detailing just how bad it was, I have to admit, I started to wonder about the damage done to the global economy and what it meant for our entire future. Think about all the electronics and cars and, well, all kinds of things, that come out of Japan or through Japan and consider what will happen when those things aren’t manufactured for a while during this crisis. The ripple from that will be felt all over the world for quite some time.
What’s worse, though, is what’s happening with those reactors.
Boing Boing has an article about how regular citizens are tracking the radiation with home-brew Geiger counters, which is cool, but, frankly, a little frightening. I mean, I was concerned when one of my friends said she was going to spend the night in her office because the trains were out and she had a 20+ mile walk home, but this… Well, when the government, any government, tells you not to worry about radiation, frankly, I’d worry. You know it has to be pretty bad when the U.S. Navy moves its fleet because they were concerned about radiation levels 160k out into the ocean. That just can’t be good. From the stories, at least one reactor is most likely experiencing a melt down, and probably more than one really is. They claim it won’t be another Chernobyl, but, somehow, I just don’t believe them. And, with so many people in such a tight geographical area, I have to wonder what the long-term implications of this will be. I haven’t heard many clear estimates on how many have already died in this tragedy, but I’m sure it’s going to get worse.
Thank God for the brave workers who stayed, at peril to their own lives, to try to contain the damage as much as possible. They’re real heroes.
I don’t know how many people are without basic shelter and necessities, but there are a couple ways to help.
First, a company named Shelter Box is sending disaster kits there and needs funding. They seem legit and their kit is a pretty good selection of things that people would be needing. Remember, we’re hearing a lot about the reactors, but there are also thousands of people who have been hammered by tsunamis as well. It’s just like the hurricanes have been here in the States. They have the same kinds of problems and need the same kind of help.
Another great way to help is to donate to the Red Cross at this link. They always help and get the maximum amount of your donation directly to the people who need it. Also, a general donation to them will help the people in Christchurch, New Zealand who were hit with earthquakes recently and the people in Haiti who still need help, too.
And, if you can’t donate, pray for them.
If you don’t pray, then at least send whatever positive energy you can their way.
Finally, for those of you, like me, who live in hurricane country, now is the time to think about putting together a disaster survival kit. Seriously. I talk about this almost every year, but, really, we need to do it. I know I’ve been putting things together for the past several years, just in case, but it never hurts to plan a little more. Even under the best circumstances, authorities expect us to be able to fend for ourselves for at least 72 hours.
Think about that and ask yourself if you’re prepared. If not, seriously consider getting prepared before it’s too late.