September 1, 2014 in Letters, Opinion

Disasters and charity


It’s true, some of the homes at risk during these forest conflagrations are year-round residences. But they’re built in rural locations, where folks, by and large, choose to live. That’s what insurance is for. Expecting Uncle Sam to parachute in to save their property can be as wrong-headed as expecting Uncle Sam to rebuild areas in known flood plains, hurricane areas and other weather-related risk areas.

Then there are all the charities and individuals that want to help and often haphazardly donate to deal with perceived needs in ways that, in the long run, can be more of a burden than a help to those affected.

There are many issues related to these natural disasters, and I’m certainly not advocating a “burn, baby burn” policy regarding forest and disaster management. But when high-priced vacation getaways and second homes and such are destroyed, and planned evacuation is successful, I chalk it up to property owners who fully understand the risks associated with their property location, ownership, etc., and are willing to accept them.

That shouldn’t be the basis for charity.

Phil Church

West Richland, Wash.

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