Dear amazing people who signed my petition asking HBO, the producers of the iconic Boardwalk Empire, to raise funds to help rebuild Atlantic City:
HBO has stepped up and heard our calls! This past week, HBO co-aired a huge benefit concert with NBC, and promoted it on its Boardwalk Empire Facebook page, amongst other places. While it is possible that many people were asking them to use their powerful Atlantic City-focused program to help Atlantic City families recover, our 300 voices and the many press pieces we earned for speaking out were almost certainly part of their decision to fundraise and act.
Steve Buscemi -- Nucky Thompson himself!-- is fundraising for Hurricane Sandy-impacted first responders -- http://www.katiecouric.com/behind-the-scenes/steve-buscemis-message-to-you/ -- http://www.katiecouric.com/on-the-show/2012/11/05/hurricane-sandy-day-of-giving/. Thanks to him and HBO for stepping up for these communities!
The working people of Atlantic City and other communities in New Jersey, New York, and other Sandy-impacted communities were already struggling with the economic crisis, losing jobs and homes, and much more. Investing our time, donations, and resources in those community groups that are on the ground now and are working with poor and working people recovering from the storm can make a huge difference. I hope that can be our next step!
I'll be donating money and supplies to the Community Presbyterian Church at 1501 West Brigantine Avenue Brigantine, NJ 08203. They're running a big donation and distribution operation for Brigantine, NJ and Atlantic City families. They have tons of clothes and food, but need cleaning supplies -- bleach, sponges, buckets, mops, for cleanup -- as well as baby supplies, diapers, and toiletries. Visit them at http://www.brigchurch.org/photo_gallery_.aspx, or call them at 609-266-7942 to learn how to donate.
I love Boardwalk Empire, and was watching it Monday night, October 29th as the storm howled past our windows. But thousands of families and workers in Atlantic City have wrecked businesses, closed schools, delayed jobs, and destroyed beaches to look forward to tonight: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/30/nyregion/storm-overwhelms-atlantic-city.html
After 9/11, I remember many television platforms breaking the fourth wall to raise money for or stand with survivors of the attacks. Post Frankenstorm Sandy, HBO should use Boardwalk Empire to raise funds directly for Atlantic City.
HBO has won huge acclaim and made millions with its captivating story about how Prohibition changed countless lives. With the horrible damage that Frankenstorm Sandy wreaked on the city's businesses and homes, HBO can use its powerful media platform to raise money and support local, state, and federal relief efforts.
And maybe we should think about how climate change might mean that the Boardwalk that Nucky Thompson stands by in the opening credits just got washed away?