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A Natural Disaster No One Cares About

Three days ago, millions of Texans were subject to a winter storm that shut down businesses, homes, and disabled people from accessing basic necessities and food. There was instant criticism towards the citizens of the Southern state about why they were unable to handle a “couple inches of snow”. What many failed to realize was that the power grids, homes, and roads in Texas were unable to withstand the extreme freezing temperatures. Texans are not equipped to handle the severe cold, so many homes with outdoor pipes burst and left millions of Texans stranded in homes without proper heating. In addition, many of the roads in Texas are built with steel in them; the combination of black ice on the roads and thousands of people needing to drive to garner supplies to withstand the storm has caused catastrophic outcomes. In Dallas, a 100 car pileup in the middle of the storm resulted in the loss of at least 10 lives and leftover 65 people in the ICU fighting for their lives. 

    To make matters worse, the state government of Texas has handled this disaster in the worst possible way. Senator Ted Cruz decided to leave the state – he and his family are in Cancun while the disaster subsides. Meanwhile, the mayor of Colorado City, Texas, advised citizens that it was their responsibility to gather their own supplies and that the local governments do not owe anyone anything. Homeless people are perishing on the street from the cold. Families are not able to provide heat to their homes and are subject to freezing temperatures and a lack of supplies. Power grids are slowly being fixed and some families’ electricity and water have returned, but there are still over 500,000 homes and businesses that are devoid of electricity and water.

    The lack of support that American citizens have received from their government is astounding. This is a matter I hold close to my heart because I have grandparents, aunts and uncles, and a brother who lives in San Antonio, and they went days without power and a lack of resources to properly feed themselves. It was exhausting wondering if there would be support from the politicians who promised to care for their state and citizens, but it is reflective of ideals that are toxic to our country. Citizens should not have to pull “themselves up by their bootstraps” and be expected to provide relief for themselves when a natural disaster strikes. Texans and Americans all over the country should never be abandoned by their elected officials when they are in a dire time of need.

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