This is a post begging people outside of Flint, Mich. to show some humanity and help instead of hate.
Today, I turned on College GameDay and was pissed off – we’ll get to that later. Before I start, I’m not a politics guy, so don’t tie to me any parties or affiliations after this post. I’m a college football writer, and today I’m a little extra human with what I’m about to write — or, more or less — vent to you about.
Let me tell you about Flint.
Here’s a good timeline of what led Flint to lead poisoning – according to buckfirelaw.com.
As of Nov. 5, it has been 1,289 days since the city of Flint has had clean water – that’s over 3 years. To some, that might not sound like a big deal. Hell, it might even sound like a good way to poke fun at others, go viral and get retweets.
Like this College GameDay sign:
— Kristen Duncan (@DrKristenDuncan) November 4, 2017
Or this sign on the walls of a student hall at Penn State University:
No chill whatsoever pic.twitter.com/O5oO1MfvsP
— Barstool Penn State (@PSUBarstool) October 16, 2017
While jokes land retweets … lead to Twitter fame … or get you on TV during College GameDay, Flint continues to suffer and it needs your help – not your slander.
Maybe it’s time to be a bit more selfless, than selfish, and help out the City of Flint.
You want to know how bad dirty water can harm a city?
— Rewire.News (@Rewire_News) November 3, 2017
Mothers can’t even be mothers in Flint right now because: A. They’re losing their babies before birth or B. Their living children are sick from the water itself.
And if kids being sick and mothers losing their children wasn’t enough to convince you, how about the statistics behind it all?
The Detroit Free Press’ Keith Matheny had a revealing study on the crisis: Fertility rates decreased by 12% among Flint women, and fetal death rates increased by 58%, after April 2014. That’s according to research by assistant professors and health economists David Slusky at Kansas University and Daniel Grossman at West Virginia University.
And while some low-lives are behind a keyboard, or flashing a sign on GameDay to poke at their college football rival, a 13-year-old girl is inventing a way to keep the people of Flint better aware of what they’re putting into their bodies.
I hate to call it pathetic because that’d take away from both the love and genius of the young girl. But for us to have to wait this long for a child her age to come up with something to help them — while some adults, with kids, are just concerned about the opportunities to go viral — is pathetic.
Regardless, what she’s doing is incredible and should be honored. In fact, take her as an example of selflessness.
This 11-year-old girl just invented a device to help Flint residents test their water for lead. pic.twitter.com/Al28D8amQU
— AJ+ (@ajplus) October 25, 2017
According to CNN.com, 15 have died from Legionnaires disease, while 77 have been affected, in Flint. All studies point towards that stemming from the Flint Water Crisis. That’s not counting the fetal deaths from miscarriages that had a 58% increase from the crisis.
Here are a few really good stops you should make, if you want to learn more & help Flint:
- CNN has the most in-depth timeline of the water crisis, from October of 2017 – it’s brand new.
- You can donate to the crisis, while viewing testing results, on top of other facts at HelpForFlint.com.
- You can report people who make jokes about Flint here. But I encourage you to ask them to donate instead.
I’m not a model human being. We’ve all got a lot to work on. But the inhumanity of the constant mockery of a real-world crisis is baffling and needs to stop.
Will this stop it? No.
Can I, or you, stop it alone? No.
But we can do our best to help with the platform we have.
Have a great football Saturday.
This post does not reflect the views of The Wolverine Lounge, but is rather an opinion post from Brandon Justice. The Wolverine Lounge remains a destination for Michigan Wolverines fans to hangout online to discuss University of Michigan athletics. It is not, nor will it ever be, a political site. Brandon chose to write this piece based on wanting to use the platform he has to spread awareness of the Flint Water Crisis.