Browse Month: October 2016


Hurricane Relief from Across the World

In early October 2016, Hurricane Matthew made landfall across the Bahamas, Cuba and Haiti before impacting the United States. While the impact to Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas was significant, it was absolutely devastating to Cuba and Haiti, where hundreds died and thousands were left homeless. The devastation led to calls for humanitarian assistance from across the globe.


Individuals Were Asked to Donate to the Red Cross


A campaign was organized that asked individuals to donate $10 by sending a text message to a dedicated phone number. The money would then be collected and distributed as needed to victims of the storm in Haiti and elsewhere. While donating to a good cause may seem like a nice thing to to do, it could have financial consequences for those who decided to give.


Can You Afford to Donate?


The first question that you need to ask yourself before you give away any of your money is if you can afford to do so. Although $10 may seem like a small amount, that could equal more than an hour of work for someone making minimum wage. That money could help pay for rent, food or basic medical supplies for yourself and your family. Therefore, you need to make sure that you have sound financial and debt management practices in place before you decide to part with your hard earned cash. The one positive is that donations to groups such as UNICEF USA are tax-deductible.


What Is the Money Used For?


The money was used to make sure that medical assistance could be brought to the people of Haiti and elsewhere in the Caribbean that were impacted by the storm. It was also used to provide food and shelter to the thousands of people who were left homeless by the storm. In some parts of Haiti, metal roofs were stripped clean from the structures that they were keeping safe from the elements. Some parts of the country were impassable for hours or days after the storm, and donations helped pay for recovery efforts despite the danger.


Crowdfunding Sites are Also Being Used to Collect Donations


In addition to texting dedicated phone numbers to send a donation, you may also donate using crowdfunding and other online portals. This enables people from around the globe to donate and contribute to the effort to help those in need. If you are going to donate through such a site, you may want to make sure that the funds are actually going to where they say that they will go. This can be done by reviewing the public records that charities and nonprofits must file with the state and federal government. You may also be able to talk directly with someone from a charity or someone who has worked with the charity that you want to donate through.


Hurricane Matthew caused billions of dollars in damage when it tore through the island nations in the Caribbean. However, with your generosity and the generosity of others like yourself, it may be possible to raise the money needed to help the people who have been impacted and help them try to return to a normal life.


What We Know And Don’t Know About New York and New Jersey Explosions

Last week, the nation was shocked to learn about multiple bombing attempts that took place between September 17 and September 18. Fortunately, no one was killed in the bombs, but several people were harmed in this concerning terrorist attack. At first there were a lot of confusing and conflicting rumors surrounding the New York and New Jersey bombings, but after detailed investigation by the police and FBI, we are finally starting to get a clearer picture of what took place. Here is all of the information we have learned about the bombings so far.


Things We Know About the Bombings


Law enforcement individuals involved in the bombings have been very open and honest throughout their investigation. Therefore, we already know quite a few facts about what took place before, during, and after the explosions.

  • 1. The Damage Done
  • At the time of the bombings, you may have heard many rumors about high death counts. Fortunately, this did not actually happen. Though 31 people were injured in the first explosion, most of them just received minor cuts, and all were released from the hospital shortly. The rest of the bombs were discovered before they exploded, so no one else was injured.
  • 2. The Bomber’s Identity
  • The police quickly realized that Ahmad Khan Rahami seemed to be involved due to a fingerprint found. After a shootout in Linden, New Jersey, which killed no one, Rahami was taken into custody and is being charged with several crimes. His bail is currently set at $5.2 million
  • 3. The Bomber’s Motivations
  • When the press learned that the suspect was of Afghan descent, there was a lot of speculation that the attack was a terrorist attack. Investigators have confirmed that they recovered a notebook from Rahami that mentioned killing unbelievers, the Boston Bombing, and the name of a cleric who recruits for al-Qaeda. At one point in 2014, the FBI was also notified by Rahami’s father that he was concerned Rahami had been radicalized. All of this evidence hints that there were at least some radical terrorist motivations behind the attack.

Still Unknown Facts About the Bombings


We may know quite a bit about the New York and New Jersey bombings, but there are still some facts that have not been revealed yet.

  • 1. Did Rahami Have Help?
  • Of course the most immediate concern for investigators is still figuring out whether Rahami acted alone or if he had any help from any individuals or local terrorist cells. There is not really any evidence suggesting that Rahami was working with any terrorist cells, but bomb technicians have raised some concerns that they do not think Rahami could have been able to build such efficient bombs by themselves.
  • 2. Was Rahami Radicalized or Unstable?
  • Since he visited Pakistan frequently, it is possible that Rahami was radicalized by the Islamic State, who targets young immigrants with their propaganda. However, it is possible that he just chose to commit a terrorist act due to personal mental instability.
  • 3. Were the Bombings Connected to Minnesota Stabbings?
  • The bombings occurred during roughly the same time period as a mass-stabbing incident in Minnesota that was claimed by IS. So far, law enforcement has not been able to learn if the two events are connected.