The following content was published in The State Newspaper – South Carolina on Tuesday, October 13, 2015:
Disaster, tragedy, and devastation can bring the worst out in people. Here in South Carolina recent floods as a residual affect of hurricane Joaquin have brought out the best in people. Just as with other natural disasters or man made tragedy, neighbors near and far came together to help each other.
We forgot what divided us and what made us different. We forgot why we didn’t like the neighbor next door or our co-worker. We forgot that the guy whose house was filled with flood water is a Clemson graduate or a Carolina graduate. We forgot about the unimportant things, we even saw pass skin color. We remembered one thing that we are all human beings going through the same tragedy.
We watched the news and shared on social media. We answered the call to help by giving blood or helping find shelter. We gave information about where to get bottled water. And we prayed. We even stopped for a minute and not complain about our legislatures. We waved hello to the power company van and told the phone company technician thank you.
During natural disasters we find our greater selves. We rise up to be and do what is meaningful. We let first responders know about the elderly neighbor that may be trapped in her house, the same neighbor we called nosey last week.
Eventually the rain does subside and the sun shines bright again. We must remember the core of who we are to continue to get things done without the need for tragedy or natural disasters. We see all around the nation and the planet when people need help we answer the call.
Times like these I always hear the John Lennon song “Imagine” playing in my head. Ultimately if we seek to remember what makes us similar and not focus on our differences, we will be better for it. Let’s stand together and not merely imagine unity but keep it going when the sun comes out.
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