Increasing chaos driving man to his wit’s end: The Texas example
Suddenly, attention has shifted away from the holocaust that has engulfed Syria for about seven years now. The headlines have moved from Syria following a truce brokered by the United States President, Mr. Trump, and his Russian counterpart, Mr. Putin. But then, the peace agreement does not represent an end to anxiety across our beleaguered globe. Our world is moving from one disaster to another. Mr. Harvey, the messenger of horror and misery and hopelessness has delivered. May I quickly add that Mr. Harvey’s assistant has eclipsed our worries over Myanmar. Indeed, the political turbulence there has been consigned to the back seat by floods in Bangladesh and India, the yearly Monsoon emissary of sorrow and gnashing of teeth. I say so because we may remember this was the same corridor where reports said, back in 2012, that flooding arising from Monsoon rains killed 422 persons and injured 3,000 in Pakistan. In the Philippines a state of calamity was declared after floods left a trail of destruction with victims numbering 9,000 persons. That year in India, Assam floods rendered three million homeless; 2,126,902 hectares of farmlands were affected. India Air force helicopters had to be dropping supplies in-between heavy storms. Altogether, 166 relief camps were set up across the state.
In the latest in India, the trail of disaster just doesn’t end with floods killing 514 people in the eastern state of Bihar and affecting 17million others in one way or the other, it stretched to Uttar Pradesh where death toll is reported to be 109 and people either displaced or injured going to 2.5 million. Landslide in Nepal killed more than 100 people. The clang is even this: there is this 1,800 bed hospital in Mumbai. Doctors were driven away by floods that entered the paediatric ward. They were concerned that there might be infections as the rain water was circulating rubbish to the emergency ward. Hearts sank when meteorologists issued another warning that the rains would continue for 24 hours. Residents were admonished to remain indoors. Flights were disrupted and train services were suspended. Schools were closed. Houses collapsed and walls gave way. The rains caused landslides; damaged roads and electric towers as well as washed away tens of thousands of homes and vast swaths of farmlands. The Indian newspapers screamed that floods paralyze Mumbai as India and region are hit by heaviest rains in years.
As the mind raced anxiously to have a panoramic view of developments in Asia—what with North Korea strong man Kim Jung Un diverting attention by firing its intercontinental ballistic missiles to overfly Japan—little did the world realise that Mr. Harvey was rehearsing to inflict further harm on Texas. It came with fury on Tuesday night pouring 12 inches more of rain to a state already soaked in 49.32 inches of rain water, as if to concentrate our minds.
So, now back in Houston: Mr. Trump visiting earlier in the day, lamented thus: “This was of epic proportions; nobody has ever seen anything like this, and nobody has ever seen this much water. The wind was pretty horrific, but the water has never been seen like this—to this extent.” He went on: “There has never been anything so historic in terms of damage and in terms of ferocity with what we witnessed with Harvey.”
An estimated 30, 000 people are seeking refuge in temporary shelters across the state. In Katy, dozens of people waited on the line for food and water outside of an understaffed supermarket. More than 100,000 people are without power in Houston. In all, about 500,000 people are expected to seek disaster assistance and Vice-president Pence gave the assurance that their Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) was up to the task. It has a disaster relief fund of $3 billion and that it would be adequate to cover the costs.
It is so touching to see how Americans bonded to share in the pains and seeming hopelessness the people of Houston who undoubtedly feel defeated had in the battle with the elements, with Hurricane Harvey. The government rose to the occasion, with the Federal and state giving assurances that they are not alone. See what happened to demonstrate it: 12,000 state’s national Guards were deployed. Pentagon reinforced that with additional 20,000 to 30,000 National Guard troops. And 8,600 Federal employees were already on ground. Vice-President Pence was to reveal that more than 2.5 million meals and 2 million litres of water had been sent and more was on the way. Three dozen Coast Guard vehicles, helicopters and more than 100 shallow water rescue boats were sent not to mention hundreds and hundreds of volunteers who rushed there with their own watercraft to assist the people. “It’s been incredibly inspiring”, Mr. Pence was quoted as saying. The Governor of Texas called it “one of the largest disasters America has ever faced.” One of the rivers reached its overflow level measuring 52 feet which is expected to reach 59 feet by weekend.
Coast Guards were receiving 1,000 calls per hour for help. Police, fire fighters all combined efforts with the National Guards and the Coast Guards. One convention centre alone had 9,000 people crowded in it for shelter. One furniture company opened its two stores to house displaced people, one sheltering about 400 people and the other 360. Death toll has climbed to 30, among them a policeman who died in his car while rushing out to be at his post on rescue operation. His wife, at the urging by her intuition, had felt uneasy and asked him not to leave home. He refused saying, “I have got work to do.” His boss in a tribute said: “Sgt. Perez lost his life because he tried to make it happen; he tried to get to his post so he could help other hurricane victims. That’s the ultimate sacrifice. What we can say is that Sgt. Perez fulfilled his mission and the Lord called him home.” Little wonder a lady official involved in giving helping hands said of the experiences: “It is heart breaking and heartwarming at the same time.”
Incidentally, last Tuesday marked the 12th anniversary of the similar disaster when New Orleans was ravaged by Katrina Hurricane. Many of them were evacuated to Houston, the same Houston that is now at the receiving end. It was reported that 40,000 of those evacuated there eventually settled in Houston. One of them, now a retired citizen who described himself as a victim of Hurricane Harvey’s wrath and putting up in a hotel with his two dogs sent a note, saying: “It will take years to replace homes, business, and amenities which make Rockport home. I am sharing my thoughts with you to point out some important truths. Storms do not just happen, go away, and then life gets back to normal. The impact lasts for years, with memories seared into our brains. Lives are changed forever.”
What are the causes of all these harrowing experiences and why do they happen? For years there has been talk about climate change. Al Gore, former U.S. Vice-President to President Bill Clinton took it upon himself, crisscrossing the world to draw our attention to the dangers our world faced because the world was out of balance. He wrote a book to demonstrate the conviction of his perception that the world had all along been looking at the symptoms and not the cause and the problem would not just persist but get worse. Scientists, for example, say, with climate change, a warmer atmosphere is able to hold more moisture. Climate change itself is thought to have ensued as a result of carbon emissions by various manufacturing industries and it is being suggested that they pay carbon tax and are issued clean energy certificates. Scientists argue that through unconscionable exploitation and consumption of fossil fuels, gas, coal and oil, human beings release gas carbon dioxide into the atmosphere which in turn gives rise to greenhouse effect which heats up average temperature across the world. The result today is that the carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere was never at any time as high in the last 800,000 years as we have it today.
This subject will be treated hopefully more exhaustively in subsequent outing of this column. At that time the threat of a nuclear war between Washington and Pyongyang will be also be discussed just to see how the rhetorics Mr. Trump and Kim Jung Un spew out into the environment can trigger the worsening of climate change. To a great many it is inconceivable that just two strides of the beings, the Nixies, the Lord’s living executive servants in charge of water, can result in currents triggering force winds we call Hurricane. Yet, the Lord commanded the raging sea to be calm. To whom did He issue His command? Did Ezekiel not speak of living creatures in the clouds? (Ezekiel 1:4-21).It is food for thought!!
The cop’s wife
The wife of the police sergeant, who died in the floods in Houston driven by the urge out of love beyond the call of duty, ignored the admonition by his wife not to leave home. She felt uneasy that the husband was going out amidst the charging of Hurricane that went out of control, tearing down everywhere and every object on its path. Was the wife’s action out of love or out of selfishness especially as the man was going out at 4.30 am? Certainly not. Mrs. Perez was on duty, alive to her tasks. It should bear repeating that a man is a man and a woman is a woman by the nature of their activities. As an expression of higher wisdom women are closer to nature and are, therefore, the leaders, the mediators of radiation power of the Most High to our world and to men. They are the veritable bridge through a gift of higher spiritual essence they carry to guide and ennoble mankind. In their character they are more sensitive, more receptive to spiritual promptings and more introspective. It is said of women that their sixth sense is sharper than that of men, while the characteristic of the man is more outwardly driven. He is to head for the moon and come back. He is to jump from the roof. He is coarse while the woman is delicate and refined so that the power from On High can permeate her being. Is there nothing about the wonder of how a woman gets up suddenly and she knows how things are with her baby and she is able to sense it is thirsty, is feeling hot or is in need of her attention? She rushes to the room and behold the child actually needs her. It flows from fine threads of connection spun between the mother and the child during pregnancy which threads remain even when the child leaves home for school. Something tells her she must go and see the child at school, only to get there and be told he has fractured his leg while playing football and he has been taken to hospital! So is it that the woman is ready without first considering to lay down her life for her child. The wonders of this beautiful Creation if we seek to know! The likes of Mrs. Perez must be encouraged to save our troubled world…if men would listen!!
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