John Overmyer

Haiti und die Grenzen der Großzügigkeit

MELBOURNE: Überall auf der Welt haben die Menschen großzügig auf das verheerenden Erdbeben reagiert, das Haiti getroffen hat. Nach nur drei Tagen hatten mehr als eine Million Amerikaner per SMS-Nachricht von ihrem Handy aus jeweils 10 Dollar gespendet. Menschen, die selbst kaum etwas besitzen, wie Maria Pacheco, eine arbeitslose alleinerziehende Mutter aus Chicago, spendeten Nahrungsmittel und Kleidungsstücke.

Andere taten, was immer sie konnten – von der Fußpflege bis zur Autowäsche –, um Geld aufzubringen. Gegenwärtig sieht es aus, als würde der Spendenbetrag der Amerikaner zugunsten der Hilfebemühungen in Haiti jene 1,9 Milliarden Dollar übersteigen, die sie 2004 den Opfern des Tsunamis in Asien 2004 spendeten und die bisher den Rekord für Spenden bei Katastrophen außerhalb der Vereinigten Staaten darstellten. Angesichts der Tatsache, dass die USA derzeit selbst wirtschaftlich harte Zeiten durchmachen, hat der Umfang der Reaktion viele überrascht.

Haitis Nähe, und die Tatsache, dass fast eine halbe Million Haitianer in den USA leben, helfen in gewissem Umfang, die Großzügigkeit der Amerikaner zu erklären. Doch gab es entsprechende Reaktionen weltweit. In Melbourne hielten anlässlich der Australian Open Roger Federer, Serena Williams und andere Stars einen Schaukampf ab, bei dem Spenden in Höhe von 600.000 Dollar flossen. In Ruanda brachte eine Gruppe kommunaler Krankenpflegekräfte, die jeweils weniger als 200 Dollar im Monat verdienen, für Haiti 7000 Dollar auf.

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