OUR VIEW: Charitable donations show the goodness of humanity following NFL medical emergency

Published 2:31 pm Tuesday, January 3, 2023

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On Monday night, a tragedy unlike anything most of us have experienced occurred on national television as Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin collapsed to the field after making a tackle. Just about everyone reading this is a football fan, so at first, you assumed he’d get up or get carted off, and then the game would resume. That’s what always happens, 99% of the time.

But this was different. CPR was administered on the field, and, as we write this, Hamlin was sedated and listed in critical condition. 

The reaction of the players was hard to watch, even from hundreds of miles away in our comfortable homes. You could see the concern on their faces. 

The game, arguably the biggest of the NFL season, suddenly didn’t mean anything. It didn’t resume. There’s no public discussion as to when it will be played, and it’s not time to have that discussion. 

In the face of this horrible circumstance, many people started banding together.  More than $4 million had been raised as of Tuesday morning on a GoFundMe for Hamlin’s toy drive.

“As I embark on my journey to the NFL, I will never forget where I come from and I am committed to using my platform to positively impact the community that raised me,” Hamlin wrote on the GoFundMe page. “I created The Chasing M’s Foundation as a vehicle that will allow me to deliver that impact, and the first program is the 2020 Community Toy Drive. This campaign gives you the opportunity to contribute to our first initiative and positively impact children who have been hardest hit by the pandemic.  100% of the funds raised will go toward the purchase of toys for kids in need.”

The goal for the GoFundMe was $2,500. Now, it’s brought in millions.

We obviously don’t know Hamlin, as he grew up in the Pittsburgh area, but it’s clear based on this GoFundMe that he has a caring heart and wants to help those in need. This is the sort of person you cheer for. 

The internet is a deep, dark hole at times, but in instances like this — when used the right way — it allows people to come together to show support. 

People using social media to politicize something should be ashamed of themselves, so keep that in mind when you’re reading any updates.

Share links like the GoFundMe supporting Hamlin.

Share information on CPR courses, so that maybe someone you know will see it and sign up. Or sign up yourself. It could result in saving a life.