On January 4, Congress approved a bill partially funding Sandy relief efforts. However, the funding is less than 1/6 the amount requested by local, state and federal agencies in the midst of the cleanup. This is not a political issue; it’s more basic than that. We tell each other and teach our children that people should keep their promises. Our nation has promised to help our citizens in distress, but is now refusing to do so. People are still living away from their homes with friends or family – or worse, actually in their water soaked, nearly ruined homes in unsafe conditions.
On January 7, the Daily Show with Jon Stewart berated a Congress that has been slow at addressing the horrible damage done to New York and New Jersey by Sandy and by their eventual failure to live up to our nation’s promises. Stewart was snarky and funny, but also seemed moved and very serious about the terrible consequences of a political system so stuck in its ideological bog that America’s leadership can’t see clear to doing what is right. If we don’t think government should help in these situations, we can debate and put it to a vote. But – as we tell any child – you don’t promise to help someone and then refuse to do so right when they need it.