A tragedy unfolded recently in the city of Flint, Michigan. Republican Governor Rick Snyder decided that a good way to save money was to stop getting water for Flint from Detroit. He instead decided to start getting water from the Flint River. The move was intended to save Flint around $100 each day. What Snyder did not seem to know or care about at the time is that the Flint River is horribly polluted due to decades of runoff, corrosion and industrial activity. The water in the river is extremely corrosive to most substances. That includes metal.
This is the water that Governor Snyder wanted the residents of Flint to start drinking instead of the water from Detroit. Bad things started happening in Flint soon after the change in April of 2014. Residents almost immediately noticed a difference. The water had a murky, muddy brown color. It had a terrible odor. Complaints began rolling in. The Department of Environmental Quality tested the water but claimed it was safe. Governor Snyder seemed to ignore the initial complaints from citizens. It took until October for the water source to be changed to Lake Huron.
Unfortunately, the damage was already done by that point and residents were outraged. It turns out that the water the Flint residents had been drinking was contaminated. It contained a high amount lead. Most of the people in the city were forced to drink the contaminated and polluted water for months on end while being told that everything was fine. It is estimated that around 100,000 people consumed the lead in the water. This includes thousands of children. Lead can lead to developmental problems in children and health problems in adults. It cannot be readily removed from the body. An added problem is that the water lines under Flint corroded even more due to the river water.
This means the lead will continue to leach into the water coming from Lake Huron. The result is that the residents of Flint, Michigan can no longer drink the water coming out of their taps. It could take weeks or months for something to be done about that. An added difficulty is that the nearest grocery store is outside of Flint making it a chore for anyone in the city to buy bottled water. Fortunately, where Governor Snyder failed to act, the people of Michigan and the United States stepped up. People and organizations around the country are sending bottled water to the residents of Flint to help them survive this disaster. Some Republicans and Conservatives might be surprised that one of the groups sending water is a Muslim organization called “Who Is Hussein?”
The water came from the community of Muslims located just next door in the city of Dearborn, Michigan. Organizers realized that the people in Flint were neighbors and needed help. The Muslim community rallied and managed to collect over 30,000 bottles of water. The water will be sent to Flint through the Red Cross. Donating the water was a gesture of charity and compassion from the Muslim community that will not likely be covered on the mainstream news networks. This is especially true on Conservative media like Fox News. The narrative there is that even Muslim Americans with no ties to terrorism are still terrorists who hate this county and all citizens.
Governor Rick Snyder apologized during an address to the people of Flint although it was generally seen as not being enough. Many are calling for his resignation for poisoning an entire city in an attempt to save money. The Department of Environmental Quality and the local water company also bear some responsibility in this tragedy. Governor Snyder has been called by Congress to speak before the House Oversight Committee to answer for what happened in Flint.