I read the following on CNN today:
(CNN) -- One man was electrocuted and his female partner was severely burned after the couple attempted to steal copper wire from a vacant property in Southern California, police said. "I believe they thought the power was off," said Lt. Keith Hupp of the South Gate Police Department. "It was a pretty ugly scene," he added.
A witness said he rushed to the site after hearing an explosion. "I just heard a loud explosion and a lady screaming, just screaming like crazy, so I walked over there and I seen her like half burned, and she was just like crying, asking for help for her husband," Jose Carrasco told CNN affiliate KABC. Police said they believe they found the couple's children -- ages 3 and 6 -- waiting in a truck near the vacant property when they arrived at the scene Saturday afternoon. The woman was being treated for severe burn injuries and listed in critical condition Saturday night, Hupp said, and the children were in the custody of protective services. Police have not released the names of the victims pending notification of next of kin.
I haven't been able to get that image out of my mind. And then tonight I watched a segment on "60 Minutes" about people in California who had done everything right -- got an education, worked hard, had good jobs, and then lost everything through unemployment. Many of them have Masters Degrees and PhDs, and they're resorting to working in Walmart, or rifling through trash bins for pop bottles to sell. Most of them are facing homelessness when their benefits run out and they can no longer afford to stay in their homes. And then I wondered if the family in the CNN news story mentioned above might be in that same situation.
When I read the news story, I was shocked -- no pun intended -- at the heartless comments left by people, saying this couple had deserved to die, and they should be awarded the Darwin award. Hardly anyone had any compassion for them. I read the other day that over 4,000,000 Americans are homeless, and 25% of them are children. Another several million are reaching the end of their 99 weeks of benefits. What on earth is going on? How did a country like America get into such a predicament, and what can they do to fix it? I know that sounds rather simplistic, but I don't have any knowledge of economics. However, I think we all have some experience of humanity. Shouldn't folks to be doing more to help their fellow down-and-out neighbours? Or does that involve that term -- socialism -- that our friends to the south seem to dislike so much.
From my extremely limited understanding, capitalism doesn't owe any explanation to anyone except the shareholders. So what good does it do to have iPhones made in Shenzhen, China, if no one in America can afford to buy them anymore, because all the jobs have gone to -- China? Foxconn, the company who makes iPhones and iPads employs 250,000 at one plant alone in China, and last year the company made $2.3 billion. One employee of Foxconn, a college graduate who works in product development, earns $293 a month. $293 a month!
I feel so sad for the family who lost their father in the horrible accident in California. I think he must have been desperate. I hope someone steps forward to take care of that family, and all the other families in that situation. Socialism or not, it's only right.