Write Lightning is a blog from writer Deb Thompson.
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Wed, Aug 31 2005

People Are Looking Around At Katrina's Mess

I just talked to someone (via a borrowed cell phone) at an apartment building in Biloxi. They returned to the area and didn't get stopped on the way in. They used a major area road and got in just fine. But they said services are nonexistent so they are planning to leave again, since they can't get food or water. They do feel a lot of things are being misrepresented in some public announcements. It isn't just that services are nonexistent. It's that people attempting to distribute goods on their own were being discouraged by those providing security there. Their impression was that a push was being made to make it tough for anyone to stay in the area, at least for now.

posted at: 14:44 | category: /Miscellaneous | link to this entry

Saving The Planet Involves More Than Hard Science

The problem with comments such as the ones that German's Environmental Minister (and others) made after a disaster like Katrina is that these comments don't usually serve to move listeners to postive action. Instead, they're likely to result in anger against the one making the comments. When people are faced with frightening, devastating circumstances they want to be comforted. Most of the people who have been directly affected by Katrina are not people who hate the planet or have been plotting its destruction. We have absolutely no way of knowing the circumstances and the political leanings of each and every person who lost a home, a loved one, a pet or a job in this situation, and for politicians to talk about blame instead of pitching in to help is very disheartening. Can we put this aside and get help to those suffering for now? When there's some degree of comfort and routine restored it would be appropriate to talk about the science of storms and the methods by which we might one day be able to minimize their affects on the planet.

If we do determine that human consumption of resources contributes to the intensity of hurricanes down the line we should work to assist every area of the planet. But when the chips are down and any part of the planet's inhabitants are suffering, the right thing to do is reach out a hand and help. If those criticizing the situation feel that politics caused more pain they can surely see that their own political remarks will also hold back efforts to relieve suffering and restore order.

If a fellow human citizen chooses to trample another's present feelings in the midst of a dangerous crisis in some attempt to take the opportunity to jump in and promote a pet theory, no matter how many facts that person has and no matter how good the intentions might have been, that person is going to come off as a rude, unfeeling jackass. Part of the delicate balance of this planet 's future should most certainly be to treat one another with respect and compassion in the here and now. Otherwise, why bother with tomorrow?

posted at: 13:08 | category: /Politics | link to this entry

Survivors Should Register

Please help pass the word that survivors of Katrina should be sure to register with the American Red Cross so that their loved ones know they are all right. Phone service is spotty, but you can use 1-800-HELP-NOW either to register or to check on a loved one you believe may have been in the affected area. Those of us wanting to help can also use that same phone number to donate to money to help relief efforts.

posted at: 09:23 | category: /Miscellaneous | link to this entry

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Stealin' copy is as bad as horse-thievin'
and cattle rustlin'! Lightning may strike
such varmints when they least expect it!