Hurricane Harvey & the “real” America
The author never knew her words would be used to describe a national disaster such as Hurricane Harvey, but they do indeed fit perfectly.
“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
Those are the words of Emma Lazarus, who wrote them for a poem called “New Colossus” helping to raise awareness and money for the pedestal the Statue of Liberty now rests upon. The entire poem can be found on a plaque at Ellis Island.
It speaks as a beckoning, a calling, for people around the world to come seek their fortune and home in America. It speaks to all people, of every race, every creed, every belief, every way of life. It is designed to bring us together as no other nation on Earth ever has.
The devastation in Texas due to Hurricane Harvey provides us with yet another example of what the real America is comprised of. People from every walk of life. Those with money and those without. Those of every color. Those of so many nationalities who find themselves thrust together in time of crisis.
And it reveals the compassion, the headlong rush into danger, the selfless acts we as Americans are known for around the world.
Leadership that knows no political stripe, color or religion
This is indeed an act of God man has no control over. We can bellow and bluster all we like, but in the end, we are all together in one place, and we must live together in one place as those who first seek and provide kindness, compassion, a sense of obligation to each other, and a level of leadership in taking the reins and pitching in whenever and wherever needed.
Perhaps it is also an act of God, whatever or whomever you deem him or her to be, in proving to ourselves what we can be and how we can treat each other without fear or discourse.
We are to this day all huddled masses yearning to be free. We are all here for a better life, a better chance at life, to be part of something special and unique.
To be Americans, yes. But also to be caring human beings existing together at all times seeking to find the best in others and the best in ourselves.
We are seeing example after example of it in Texas. Those with no thought of someone’s politics, the color of their skin, the amount of money in their pocket, their religious or social beliefs. We are merely seeing people helping people and exemplifying what is not merely god about America, but what is at the core of her very soul.
There’s more good here than we sometimes wish to admit or realize. Let’s seek to every day lift a lamp at what ails us and bring light to what we face every day, seeking to make it all brighter and more positive for everyone around us.
Godspeed those who run into danger. Godspeed the people of Texas.