FFRF Donates to Doctors Without Borders

The Freedom From Religion Foundation has made a donation to Doctors Without Borders Haiti Earthquake Response today for its Haiti relief, following the 7.0 earthquake that hit Haiti this week—the largest earthquake on that besieged island state in 200 years causing untold misery.

Doctors Without Borders has doctors in Haiti now and has favorable ratings as an entirely secular charity.

"There are many secular charities that serve needy people regardless of religion, and whose purposes are to help, not to proselytize, and which do not conduct charitable actions to promote religion," noted Foundation co-president Annie Laurie Gaylor. "The Foundation encourages its members to donate to Doctors Without Borders or high-rated secular charities with actions already ongoing in Haiti."

Foundation Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor praised the decision of Pres. Barack Obama for not repeating the mistake of the preceding administration after Hurricane Katrina. After that disaster, the Federal Emergency Management Agency prominently listed Operation Blessing, an evangelical Christian charity founded by Rev. Pat Robertson. Religious charities had overwhelmingly dominated FEMA's list of recommended charities, which the Foundation had protested in 2005.

The White House website simply recommends the (secular) Red Cross and U.S. AID, and FEMA recommends the Red Cross.

Rev. Pat Robertson yesterday blamed the earthquake in Haiti on a "pact with the devil" he claimed rebelling slaves made to defeat French colonizers. "Ever since, they have been cursed by one thing after another," he said.

"What makes Robertson's remarks so especially ridiculous is the fact that 95% of Haitians claim Christian beliefs, with 80% identifying as Roman Catholic (and 50% of the population practicing voodoo along with Christianity). Haiti is not only the poorest country in the Western hemisphere," Gaylor said, "with 80% of the population living under the poverty line, but it is one of the most religious."

Following outcries over his callous and racist remarks, Robertson issued a statement saying "Dr. Robertson's compassion for the people of Haiti is clear. He called for prayers for them."

"Rev. Robertson's remarks show the truth of Robert G. Ingersoll's remarks: Hands that help are far better than lips that pray," said Foundation Co-President Dan Barker.

Freedom From Religion Foundation

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