Where do we live? Who are we?

A Reflection in the Wake of Hurricane Harvey

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I keep reading of courageous citizens helping and saving those in need in Texas and Louisiana.  Citizens on boats, their own boats. Local police and firemen. I salute them. Their courage is coming from our deepest humanity. And I bow to the cable news teams that have saved lives. 

But–no one, I mean no one, from the press (NY Times, Washington Post, etc.), the cable news networks, members of congress, heads of Defense, FEMA, Homeland Security, advisers who surround the president (this is not a criticism of the president) have mentioned or suggested the following: 

In the the USA and abroad, we have hundreds (perhaps more than one thousand) military bases, Army bases, Marine bases, Navy bases, Air force bases; many are in Texas, Louisiana and the Mississippi Delta region.  

These bases have trained military personnel who are ready to save lives, they practice these exercises all the time (I watched some at Camp Pendleton, CA, near where my mother lived from 1974-2005). They have helicopters, small craft, life jackets, all equipment necessary to save lives. They have parachutes. We have had the Berlin Airlift, immediate invasions of nations over the last 67 years.

We are capable of immediate action. There are people waving from rooftops, towels floating the wind, men, women and children crying out for help. Food, water can be sent; tent cities can be erected. An Executive order would be required. But no one is suggesting this to our president.  I do not blame him. These efforts need not be left to courageous private citizens and local authorities.

The storm continues to head east and north. Help is available. 

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