Looking Left and Right

By Anna  Boratyn, Executive Opinion Editor
The first time that I realized that Hurricane Sandy was serious business  was when I went online, and my favorite feminist blog, Jezebel.com, was on Tumblr because of flooding from Hurricane Sandy.   Hurricane Sandy managed to ruin my day in one fell swoop, but has managed to make some people’s last few weeks the most miserable of their lives.  Just to start, Hurricane Sandy led to the deaths of 32 people and left 8 million without power, according to theatlanticcities.com.
Why didn’t I care about this hurricane sooner?  Why did it not even cross my mind to be shocked, dismayed and disgusted that there was a hurricane in New York, where Rachel Maddow lives?
It’s because there was a risk of Hurricane Sandy becoming too politicized.  Therefore, the media focused on the fact that the hurricane might become politicized instead of focusing on the fact that there was a hurricane.
The politicization went just as expected.  There was no way candidate Mitt Romney could have benefited from these circumstances. If Romney didn’t do anything, he would be lambasted for ignoring the pain and suffering of millions of people.  Plus, his numbers in the polls would certainly drop, because no news is bad news.
So Romney did do something, but it was immediately perceived as him trying to gain an advantage in the campaign off of the suffering of millions of people, probably because he was.
Mitt Romney was scheduled to do a political rally in Kettering, Ohio.  However, with news of Hurricane Sandy, he switched from political rally to “storm relief” fundraiser, where he gathered cans for the Red Cross.  The only issue with this is that the Red Cross doesn’t want your cans.
According to The Red Cross, on Bloomberg.com, “Unfortunately, due to logistical constraints the Red Cross does not accept or solicit individual donations or collections of items. Items such as collected food, used clothing and shoes must be sorted, cleaned, repackaged and transported which impedes the valuable resources of money, time, and personnel.”
The Red Cross wants your money, which can use to buy food and medical supplies, in the quantities it needs.  Families rescued from flooding houses don’t need unlimited amounts of Campbell’s chicken noodle soup.  They need medical attention, and maybe some Campbell’s chicken noodle soup later.  However, Romney hefting bags of cans makes a better photo op than Romney collecting people’s money.
Hurricane Sandy is President Barack Obama’s time to shine, to prove that he is good at being president by simply being president.  Obama has been able to order aid and assets to the entire Northeastern corridor, to get governors, mayors, and voters in the Northeast on his side.
That being said, it’s a roll of the dice that happened to go Obama’s way.  He’s just doing his job, and this election has become a crapshoot.  My sincere hope is that the president, whoever it ends up being, will run a presidency cleaner than this election has been.
Speaking of which, happy electing!