By now I’m sure you’ve seen the news about the devastating flooding going on in Houston as I type this. I don’t really know what to say but I feel like I should say something.
For those unaware my dad used to live in Texas City which is essentially a suburb of Houston. My step mom is from that area and so I have a lot of step family and friends in and around the Houston area. I spent many spring breaks and summers down there visiting family and for a long time Houston was essentially a second home for me. I am a very proud Texan (as are most if we’re being honest) so I feel a pretty emotional attachment to the area.
As news started pouring in yesterday there was a twitter thread that just broke my heart. It started as a tweet from the official City of Houston twitter page saying 911 services were at capacity and to only call if it was an actual emergency, as in more than a few inches of water in your home. There were numerous responses of people who had fled to their attics and were trapped or were on their roofs awaiting rescue. So many addressees of people in desperate need for help. It was chilling.
The pictures, videos, and stories coming from South Texas are heartbreaking, but also inspirational. So many people lending a hand where they can. The first responders selflessly risking their own well being to help those in need. And not just the first responders but also just ordinary people. There was a video that went viral on twitter of a man being interviewed by a news station as he was getting ready to launch his boat off into the water. The asked him what he was doing and he said he was going to “Go save lives.” How freaking awesome is that? This guy was going to go and help people he didn’t because they needed it.
There are tons of photos and videos of people being helped by their fellow man and it just warms my heart. I hate that a horrific event like this happens, but it also restores some faith in humanity that there are still so many good people out there willing to help.
I wish I could go and actually lend a physical hand to help those in need, but unfortunately I’m just not able to. Instead I have donated what money I can. I don’t write that so everybody can pat me on the back. Instead I hope that perhaps others will donate to help as well. The Red Cross is accepting donations, but I know some people are leery about donating to them. But there are other places you can donate such as United Way, and the Salvation Army. And if you don’t want to donate to a big charity there are several celebrities who are organizing private fund raisers. JJ Watt of the Houston Texans has already started one that he donated $100,000 to and it has almost surpassed $500,000 in less than 24 hours at the time of this writing. County music star Chris Young also started a fund raiser that he also donated $100,000 to get started and it was over $150,000 in less than 12 hours as of when I wrote this. I will link to both of those at the bottom. I would really encourage you to donate to either of those if you are able to. If not spread awareness and maybe somebody you know can. Every little bit helps. CBS is estimating this could be the costliest storm in the history of the US. I don’t really know how to wrap this up except to say that my thoughts and prayers are with everybody in the Houston area. They need all the help they can get.
JJ Watt fund raiser: https://www.youcaring.com/victimsofhurricaneharvey-915053
Chris Young’s Go Fund Me: https://www.gofundme.com/HarveyRelief