“We are not coping”
There is but one noteworthy story this week, and it is the power of nature.
By all accounts, Hurricane Irma is the kind of storm that occurs once a century; although, if you’ve been listening to climate change specialists, it is also the kind of storm that may now occur more often as a result of global warming.
But while there needs to be – and certainly will be – a discussion dissecting the reasons for Irma’s fury and destructiveness and the things done well and things done not so well, now is not the time for that discussion.
No, right now, it’s time to offer help… help for the people in Barbuda; help for the people in St. Maarten/St. Martin; help for the people in the British Virgin Islands; help for the people in the US Virgin Islands; and help for those in any other destination in the Caribbean – and let’s not forget Mexico, which experienced a massive earthquake and a hurricane all in the same week – who need assistance.
[For updates from the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), go to www.onecaribbean.org/cto-storm-watch-centre]
And, while we live in a world in which social media demands an instant response and immediate gratification of any and every request, it would be wise to be mindful of the fact that for the islands that have been devastated by Irma, the rebuilding efforts will take years – there is no quick fix, no matter how many tweets you tweet.
For me, one of the images that I keep seeing is a woman about to be evacuated to Antigua from Barbuda. You can see the rubble in the background, as she looks straight into the camera and says: “We’re not coping. Ask anybody. We’re not coping.”
I don’t know about you, but if I found my home and my neighbours’ homes in rubble, I don’t think I’d be coping either.
So everyone, let’s say a prayer for all of those who are suffering and then let’s find some way to help them.