Michigan's Flint water crisis isn't showing any signs of improving. In 2014, the city switched its public water supply from the Detroit water system to the local Flint River in an effort to save money, subsequently allowing toxic levels of lead and pollution into the water supply.
The crisis only came to national attention in mid-December, after Mayor Karen Weaver issued an official declaration of a state of emergency over the city's drinking water. In the statement, she called the situation a "man-made disaster" and the damage irreversible. Testing by the Flint Water Study has found that the city's tap water is extremely contaminated with lead, which can cause serious brain damage, especially in children.
So while that's been happening, the Governor of Michigan decided to throw his wife a birthday party, which is totally okay. However, his choice in a cake strikes some as being insensitive for featuring luxury brands while people in Flint don't have access to safe, clean water.
The cake was created by Ann Arbor bakery Sweet Heather Anne. Cake designer Heather Anne Leavitt, whose business is high-end, high-design cakes, told MLive.com she had no idea who the cake was for.
"The weird thing about it is we didn't know it was for them," said Leavitt. "We worked with a really nice woman — I'm not sure if she was a planner or what her position is. With birthday cakes, we don't normally meet the recipient. They came in with some pretty specific ideas of the things they wanted in the cake and then I designed it based on what they wanted."
She shared a few shots of the cake on the bakery's Facebook page, explaining that "everything here is edible" on this Michael Kors purse. The bakery does not share prices on its website, but notes all event cakes are custom creations.
The National Guard and FEMA have been dispatched to Flint to distribute supplies of bottled water and lead filters to citizens.