Legitimizing criticism of coastal-centric political media — they have no idea how real America works
I live in Houston where we’ve just experienced the worst natural disaster in the city’s long history. Harvey caused inestimable damage and left thousands without shelter and earthly possession. There is not one person in the Greater Houston Area, in Rockport, Port Aransas, or surrounding counties that hasn’t been adversely affected by this storm.
Naturally, the national media, like Politico are using Harvey as an opportunity to malign everything great about the Lone Star State. Essentially legitimizing criticism of coastal-centric political media — they have no idea how real America works.
Monday, I blogged about the national media’s compulsion to politicize the tragedy of others, and ignorantly so. Being in the midst of disaster, watching friends and family evacuated, flooded, and stranded, the last thing anyone needs is mindless drivel from coastal elites who know nothing about the subjects they’re criticizing:
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 long rejected outrage culture and find it an unhealthy obsession propagated by social media. That said, watching outlets like Politico spew their ignorant trollishness all over widespread tragedy is infuriating in ways I’m not entirely sure how to articulate and haven’t experienced before now.
Twice now, Politico has published down right offensive material, first in the form of a cartoon, and second, in a speculative and baseless piece suggesting Texas’ ruggedness is a casualty of Harvey.
The Cartoon, which serves as proof that no one in coastal media pontificating on Harvey has set foot in Texas, let alone understands us (also relevant, Houston is as blue as blue can be):
And one of the dumber things I’ve read. Mind you, just before lunch Friday morning, parts of west Houston received evacuation orders, so this ordeal is far from over:
I won’t waste time ripping these to pieces, but I will offer this video as part of my thoughts on the matter:
— Michael Keyes (@michaelkeyes) August 31, 2017
— Michael Berry (@MichaelBerrySho) August 30, 2017
And also this:
Everyone we know in town and even as far as a four-hour drive from here have been impacted by Harvey. I cannot stress enough how unusually devastating this event has been. 53 counties (in Texas alone) and more than 15 million (at low estimates) were in Harvey’s path.
Folks, like my in-laws, who have lived in their homes for more than 40 years and never came close to taking in water, flooded.
Entire neighborhoods and communities have been destroyed. And no one is looking for help from anyone other than their support groups or less affected neighbors willing to help. Instead, every one, even those who lost everything are asking how they can help others hurt worse.
There are lines outside of open grocery stores. I stopped by one of the only stores close to us that wasn’t flooded, baby in tow. No one would let me wait in line because I had the baby with me and those in line were asking one another how they fared, what they needed, and offering help. Strangers waiting in line to buy bread, most of them dealing with ruined homes and yet, they’re asking others how they can help.
Politico and other outlets can pretend Texas is something she’s not, but it won’t make her so.
Texans are bred with healthy doses of compassion, love, loyalty, and grit coursing through our veins. It’s not something we do. It’s who we are.
I’ve never been more hopeful for our future than I am now watching raw humanity’s good-heartedness shine through the very worst of circumstances.
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