This past year of 2010 was known as the Year of Earthquakes, with major quakes rocking Haiti and Chile, and multiple shockers around the globe. A pipe leading from the depths of the ocean to an oil rig broke and spilled millions of gallons of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico. With the economy plummeted into a depression, we still aided the foreign countries while ignoring our own problems. How SHOULD we have handled these events, and how should we handle future cataclysms?
In orders to respond to disasters, we need the capital and money to buy the resources needed to aid victims. If disaster strikes a major city like New York City, Los Angelos, London, Tokyo, or other metropolitan centers, then the capital needed will be lost by other cities yet re-invested rightly into recreating economic centers. To devote it to places lacking capital like Haiti, Cuba, and African countries... this would still be morally respectable, yet it is not as profitable due to how it may be spent.
The Gulf oil spill helped to display our current government's inability to act properly, and its irresponsibility. As I discussed in my prior article involving the BP Oil Spill, the government has stayed aloof while BP has taken the responsibility and burden of cleaning up. Instead of accepting aid from foreign countries willing to help, the government has taken a few pictures, threatened our oil companies' futures and is planning on taxing us heavily for this. The actions needed for this spill are obvious, and yet the government has not acted on these needs.
In the future, how should the government and people respond to natural disasters? If there were a major earthquake in California or another flood in the Central United States, how should we act? The victims involved would most likely be stranded for a bare minimum of two weeks, in danger of further damage to human lives, infrastructure and order. First, the government needs to send troops and aid to the area in need. These forces will re-instate order, give water and food to disaster victims, and begin to clear the former cityscape for reconstruction. The government needs to also heighten or lower taxes to assist the rest of the country finance the relief efforts.
Hopefully, in the face of further crisis, our government and the world community will help us by doing the right things and getting us back on our feet quickly.