Trusted local news leader for Kingman, Arizona & Mohave County
Mon, May 20

Column | Harvey teaches us to be nice to one another

It’s been one of the most heart-wrenching weeks we’ve witnessed (not first-hand, but witnessed nonetheless) in some time.

Hurricane Harvey has dominated the news this past week and there has been untold stories, both harrowing and amazing, to come out of the Houston area as more than 11,000 square miles has been under water.

It all dawned on me last Sunday just how devastating this hurricane was going to be. My heart swelled with sadness that day as I tried to put myself and my family in the shoes of the thousands of Texans who had their lives turned upside down.

Hundreds of millions of dollars have been donated to the relief efforts, and there will be much more flowing in. My donation doesn’t even amount to a speck in the universe, but my family has done something.

Hearing and reading about how Kingmanites joined forces to bring relief to those suffering in Texas has replaced the swollen heart of sadness with a swollen heart of happiness. From Tracy Langley and Shane Isbell, the Kingman truck-driving team, who are taking supplies and bringing back dogs and cats that need to be rescued.

Dillon Transportation is sending a 53-foot trailer to Texas with help from Cascades Tissue Group, which filled half of the trailer with toilet paper, paper towels and another 15,000 pounds of paper products that will be useful for rescues and recoveries. There’s talk of Dillon sending a second truck.

Veterans at Seas, Charles Black’s nonprofit veterans’ organization, is hauling supplies and the group is teaming up with Grunt Style to provide manpower support of the rescue and recovery operations.

There are 20 American Red Cross members from Mohave and Yavapai counties on the way to the devastation, and reports are there will be another 20 from the area going.

I have noticed on social media many celebrities and organizations offering matching funds when donations are made. J.J. Watt of the Houston Texans has raised more than $10 million for the fans who cheer him on. As of Friday afternoon, corporate America has raised more than $140 million, including Walmart, Verizon and Dell.

I wish it was under better circumstances, but it warms the heart to see Americans being nice to one another. Nobody is asking who these people voted for in the presidential race, whether or not they want a wall built, or should Obamacare be wiped from America’s history books.

They’re being helped by Americans because they are people living in America, and they need help. They’re being helped because by nature, people are willing to help. People are born to help and be nice to each other, but over the course of their lives they can be taught to remain selfish and hateful.

The time will come when the recovery from Hurricane Harvey will have played its way out of the news cycle. It saddens me to know that the hate toward Americans from Americans will return, but I’m afraid that is reality.

For now, I’m going to enjoy watching Americans be nice to each other for the sake of being nice.

It’s just too bad it took a hurricane to see it.


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