The death toll in Puerto Rico is 70 times higher…

The death toll in Puerto Rico is 70 times higher… May 31, 2018

than the Trump Administration claimed.  And a huge percentage of those deaths are due, not to the storm, but to the fact that a racist, negligent, and incompetent Administration did not do the work necessary to help restore the infrastructure for American citizens in desperate need.

More than 4,600 Puerto Ricans may have died in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in large part due to delayed medical care, according to a new survey of people on the island collected and analyzed by researchers at Harvard and other institutions.

The study, published Tuesday in the New England Journal of Medicine, found that Hurricane Maria may be the deadliest natural disaster to hit US soil in 100 years, with a mortality rate twice as high as Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans in 2005. The only other US disaster on record with a higher death toll is the Galveston, Texas, hurricane of 1900, when somewhere between 6,000 and 12,000 people died.

The new estimate of 4,600 “excess deaths” occurring between September 20, the day Hurricane Maria made landfall on Puerto Rico, and December 31 stands in stark contrast to the government’s official count of 64, a gross underestimate that has remained unchanged for months. The new research also validates previous analyses of mortality data and reports from the ground by journalists and other researchers that found that the death toll was well over 1,000.

To come up with the new estimate, researchers surveyed some 3,300 randomly chosen households across Puerto Rico in January and February, asking them about deaths in the family between September 20 and December 31 and factors that may have contributed to each death. They also asked about damage to their homes, and whether they were displaced and had access to food, water, health care, electricity, and cellphones. (On average, households went 84 days without electricity, 68 days without water, and 41 days without cellphone coverage after the Category 4 storm hit.)

The researchers then compared the results with Puerto Rico’s official death statistics from the same time period in 2016. They found a 62 percent increase in the mortality rate in 2017, which added up to an estimated 4,645 deaths linked to the storm (with a range of 793 and 8,498 deaths). About one-third of the deaths were attributed to delays or interruptions in health care, which in many cases was a result of widespread power outages across the island for weeks and months after the storm knocked out 80 percent of the island’s grid.

These are, by the way, conservative estimates.

If you are a “prolife” Christianist, attempt the imaginative feat of thinking of these “excess deaths” as abortions.  Perhaps then they will matter to you as something besides possible threats to Trump’s image.

In related infrastructural neglect news, Flint, Michigan has been without clean water since April 2014.  Christians believe that a basic function of the state is to ensure that things like water and electricity are provided to the general population.

Papal Message Cites “inalienable right” to Clean Water
Catholic World News (CWN), Feature Stories
Saragasso, Jul. 15, 2008 (
In a message to an International Expo in
Saragossa, Spain, Pope Benedict XVI (bio – news) has called for “clear national and international policies” to protect access to clean water.
The Pope’s message was delivered to the Saragossa Expo by Cardinal Renato Martino (bio – news), the president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace. That Council has prepared an exhibit for the Holy See at the Expo. The papal message said that the Vatican contribution was intended to “draw the visitor closer to the immense patrimony of spirituality, art, and social wisdom that is inspired by water and which has been safeguarded by the Catholic Church.”

Access to water is “a universal and inalienable right,” the papal message said. The statement expressed regret that “incursions and pressures from various social factors” have endangered the access to clean and drinkable water, and urged public officials to take appropriate action.
The Vatican’s exhibit at the Expo is also designed to help call attention to the significance of water in the spiritual heritage of Christianity, the Pope said in his message. Visitors “should not forget the religious meanings that believers, and Christianity above all, have developed from it, giving it great value as a precious immaterial good that always enriches human life on this earth.”

Christianists believe that people in brown skin who lack infrastructure are parasites who expect government to “solve all their problems.”  They praise Trump for getting tough with these entitled leeches who think they are entitled to same rights as real white Americans who voted for Trump.

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