Hurricanes Awaken The American Spirit

Posted on Posted in Reflections

Strong leadership at many levels is helping our nation respond to major hurricanes in the continental United States and our off-shore territories.

Harvey

In response to the massive flooding in Texas and the Gulf Coast, federal, state and local governments provided aid on a timely basis. But something more illustrated the true American spirit.

The Cajun Navy

Private citizens came from miles around to do whatever they could. They gassed up their bass boats, loaded them on trailers and drove to where they were needed. Thanks to them, thousands were rescued from the rising flood waters.

It was a great example of neighbors helping fellow neighbors in need. Everyone worked around the clock carrying people to higher ground. In short, they responded when the cry for help went out.

Irma

Florida was hit with high winds from Hurricane Irma. Power outages occurred, however, again thanks to strong federal, state and local leadership, the damage was quickly resolved. Residents especially thanked “the pole dancers”; electric crews who came from across the country to restore power. Another great example of neighbors helping neighbors.

Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico has been devastated by back-to-back hurricanes leaving residents with no electricity, limited fresh water and debris as far as the eye can see.

In contrast to Texas or Florida, Puerto Rico is an island where all relief supplies have to come in via ship or plane. The three million people had very limited supplies until help arrived. It is estimated that it will take months to restore power and clean up the debris.

A large cruise ship was used to transport some to safety. Portable generators were brought in to supply some emergency power. Relief supplies piled up on the docks because they had no truck drivers to move the supplies over the severely damaged roads and bridges.

Added to the immediate devastation is Puerto Rico’s current $75 billion debt. Their economy is under siege. Where will they get the money to rebuild their infrastructure?

Electricity

The hurricanes remind us that Americans take electricity for granted. It’s always available…until it’s not. We need to ask, how would we survive if our power was lost for weeks or months?

There would be chaos across the country. Within hours stores would run out of food. Gasoline supplies would be gone. Access to money would be shut down. In short, our economy would collapse.

Protecting our electrical grid must be a top priority. North Korea has already threatened to wipe it out. We can’t take that chance.

Summary

Americans again responded to major crises. They came in their boats of all sizes and shapes to help their neighbors in need. They drove repair trucks non-stop to get the power back on.

We salute the American spirit and our citizens’ “can do” attitude.

Let’s keep that spirit alive. Tell Washington that we expect the same “can do” spirit from them. Quit fighting amongst yourselves and start doing your job!