Saturday, March 13, 2010

I’ve Changed My Mind

I was going to write a post entitled “Apparently Bullies Never Grow Up” to release a diatribe on both should-be-fired Buncombe County, NC teacher Rex Roland (who has been bullying a 6th grader this year by repeatedly writing “loser” on her assignments), and the should-resign Itawamba County, MS school board (who have pulled the despicable move of completely canceling the Itawamba Agricultural High School prom in an effort to ‘win’ their bigoted stance at the same time they appear to hope to turn over the vilification of gay teen Constance McMillan to her peers, who will no doubt blame Miss McMillan for the injustice of having no prom).

Something about babies and bathwater comes to mind …

But you know what? I’m tired of the negativity. So instead I’m going share a wonderful story of love and sharing that may have begun with an act of stupid violence, but ends in an act of p’awesome awesomosity.

Animal Haven is Kansas City’s largest no-kill animal shelter, caring for approximately 4,000 animals a year, and is very well known to listeners of the Johnny Dare Morning Show, as that’s where Johnny found his little guy, Barger … and we all know Barger, since he’s an integral part of the morning show, and can often be heard voicing his beloved canine opinion on the foolishness that occurs.

It’s not an unusual occurrence for Johnny to stop whatever he’s doing, mid-do, to elicit a Barger response.

In any case, overnight Monday night thieves broke into both the main shelter on 67th and its Lost Pet Center across the street, and did THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS WORTH OF DAMAGES. Major concerns were that funds normally used for the care and shelter of the animals would have to go toward repairs, which included interior/exterior doors, locks, windows, outdoor lighting, walls (sheetrock and concrete), the floor, the safe, and the cash register, among other things.

So Tuesday morning Johnny talked with Animal Haven’s COO Teresa Johnson to find out the extent of the damage (approximately $3500) and to donate $500 to the fix-up … you can listen to their on-air discussion HERE. This started a veritable avalanche of donations from the JDMS listeners, Hope For the Holidays style, and within 12 minutes the full repairs had been covered by the listeners as either cash or in-kind (e.g., materials and labor) donations. I am a member of a club that is so very cool I defy you to find one better.

Then, later in the week Johnny read an e-mail from Animal Haven on-air, where they shared that in addition to the monetary and in-kind donations that had been made on-air, people have been stopping by leaving cash donations at the shelter … to the tune of another $10 grand. And the most telling detail is that the vast majority of folk who’ve chipped in are blue collar working class for whom the donation will cause a tightening of the belt in some other area of their lives … but that doesn’t matter, because our shelter needs help, and we love our pets, ‘nuff said.


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