TsunamiAs y'all know, the tsunami that crashed through communities along the Indian Ocean has killed many thousands of people. At lastest count, it's 68,000. The latest news is here.

Please use this open thread to discuss.

Also, please consider making a gift to the Northwest Medical Teams. They're sending two teams of doctors and nurses - and enough supplies to care for 30,000 patients in Thailand and Sri Lanka.

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    I do have one other thing to say that will be called inappropriate by some, but....

    During a local news story on an OHSU doctor who survived the tsunami, one of her relatives said something like: "I'm so grateful that God was watching over her and she made it to a hospital."

    Is there some reason that so many religious people don't recognize the logical conclusion of statements such as this? That logical conclusion being that if God was watching over her and that's why she survived, He must have said to Hell with the other 68,000+ people, let them die.

    Maybe I'm oversensitive, but the inherently implication, intended or otherwise, is that the people who died weren't deserving of God's attention. Sounds fairly demeaning to the lives of those who were lost, and to their families.

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    I would tend to agree with you, but I intend to always give regular people a break in their initial brushes with the media after extraordinary events--usually a death, but also in this case a miraculous survival. (If it was in fact a life threatening situation for her). I hold public people to task for their statements, but this woman is just an ordinary lady who is extraordinarily grateful that her relative is still alive. Cut her a little slack this week.

  • Aaron (unverified)


    Because most of those 68,000 are heathens and God is very malevolent towards heathens. The dear doctor is a good Christian and God saves her for that reason only. Luck or randomness; is not the real reasoning for her surviving this horrific event. Nevertheless, why did “some of other victims that might have been Christians” die?

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    Other good resources for tsunami news:

    Tsunami News Updates

    and also go to BBC's Asia-Pacific page and click on "Reporters' log: Asia disaster" in the right-hand sidebar. The link text is the same every day, but the link URL changes to be that day's log.

    It's essentially brief dispatches from their network of correspondents in the region. It's also very tough to read, as you can see from yesterday's log.

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    Bix, I was at a funeral for a friend on Monday. The minister said that it's very hard to understand why God would have allowed thousands to die - but that God has his reasons to call each person home.

    So, the Christian theory here is that God did, in fact, have a reason for all those folks to die.

    It's a theory.

  • Aaron (unverified)


    A strong stretch of a theory; God might have a calling for souls, but it is a very malevolent entity for it. Now with potential issues of epidemic and pandemic outbreaks of typhoid, chicken pox, cholera, bird and other influenzas, scarlet and yellow fever, and many other nasty infectious diseases for the survivors and aid workers to deal with on a daily basis. The death toll is going to hit six figures before this new wave of tragedy hits these effected areas within the region. Right now, with the death toll approx. 76700, this like the wiping out of these cities within the state of Oregon (with populations by them): Astoria 9,890 Cannon Beach 1,640 Gearhart 1,040 Seaside 6,040 Warrenton 4,300 Bandon 2,960 Coos Bay 15,650 Coquille 4,180 Lakeside 1,420 Myrtle Point 2,480 North Bend 9,620 Lincoln City 7,420 Newport 9,740 Rivergrove 320

    With truly an unknown figure for the missing—that have a slim chance of survival after all this time, so that would wipe out more coastal and river areas.

  • Randy S (unverified)

    For me, I haven't really tuned in to the details, just looked at some of the pictures (the ones of parents grieving over children are particularly powerful) and thought about the numbers.

    It is difficult to quantify. The market area of North Portland (where I work) is around 78,000. It is hard to imagine all of them gone at once.

    I think about the homeless and imagine myself under similar circumstances.

    And what I end up with is we never know when something might end our lives or the lives of those we love. And what I can do -- right here and right now -- is make sure I live my life as if it matters and love my close ones. Because you never know.

    Props to BlueOregon for being a place where I can read and write about living life as if it matters and keeping me on the path.

  • Dean (unverified)

    A couple of good places to donate for S. Asia relief are www.doctorswithoutborders.org and www.mercycorps.org Both organizations were among the first relief groups into devasted Aceh Indonesia today. Docs without Borders flew in tons of medical and sanitation supplies. Donating online with a credit card is extremely easy. Peace, Dean

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