Blogging from Houston where we’ve received 25 inches of rain these last 48 hours. Meteorologists are predicting we’ll receive another 15-25 inches in the next three days, and that’s before Harvey meanders back into the gulf, swings back around and hits us once more as a parting gift.
My brother-in-law’s family is still waiting to see if they have a home to return to in Rockport, my in-law’s were flooded out of their home, and for the first time in my entire life, I’m sitting here, like millions of others, contemplating the very real possibility that we could lose everything before this storm is through. Thousands already have.
So then I open social media to give my mind a chance to wander away from the weightiness only to find all kinds of helpful pontification, written by members of the national press corps, or other coastal elites, deigning to explain “what went wrong.” What went wrong was that the Gulf Coast was hit by a Category 4 hurricane. That’s what went wrong.
And if they’re not criticizing the decision not execute a mandatory evacuation of Houston (an entirely impossible task in the time frame given, see also: Hurricane Rita), they’re calling our Senators hypocrites for requesting federal aide when they voted against the Hurricane Sandy relief bill, a bill that was nothing more than a giant chunk of pork with very little relief.
When our entire community is in the most literal sense, drowning, no one gives a damn about a political hot take. No one cares who could’ve done what differently, or who voted or didn’t vote for a garbage piece of legislation — we’re just hoping and praying we have a home tomorrow morning and for those who’ve lost, how to rebuild.
I’ve weathered many storms and hurricanes in Houston and Harvey is by far the worst, not just in damage or rainfall. Dealing with a ceaseless, increasingly destructive storm is exhausting, not knowing when or how this will end. It will be several weeks, even months before Houston finds any normality after this.
I’ve never been more thankful for my family, who are really all that matter. At the same time, I’m deeply heartbroken. While we sit in the comfort of our dry home, thousands have lost everything and at this moment, I’m powerless to help.
Texans are resilient. Watching reports and videos of neighbors helping neighbors has been a bright spot and only confirms that we are in fact the best Republic in the union. Our first responders have been nothing short of incredible. But turning the tragedy of others into a means of scoring cheap points is about as low as it gets.
Love, compassion, and help are what Texans need. Can we at least hold the criticism until after the flood waters have receded?
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