Hurricane Harvey reminds us of what’s important


Millions of people have been affected by Hurricane Harvey — no matter their nationality or race.

For the past few months, we hear and read about what a disaster our country is, how racist it has become and the turmoil in Washington as Republicans and Democrats constantly disagree with each other and within their own parties.

We have become a nation of overly sensitive people, who over-think everything, and have allowed ourselves to be manipulated by the media, which doesn’t just relays the news but presents it as if it were a reality television drama.

The only time I hear sincerity in the voice of national news reporters is when a disaster occurs. The rest of the time it seems as if the media makes things more outrageous and controversial than they are for television ratings.

Harvey has been dramatic and has left an aftermath of destruction that has affected everyone — Hispanics, African American, white, Asian. A hurricane doesn’t discriminate.

Drama cannot be amplified in any way because it is real, and what we see on T.V. is heartbreaking.

These past few days have shown us what I believe Americans are really all about. On television we have seen volunteers not only from Texas, but all over the U.S. — strangers banding together to aid and comfort each other without judgments or asking their political preference.

Individuals from all walks of life are helping each other and setting differences aside because in the face of tragedy we are all the same. We all feel pain and loss.

Love has been said to be the glue that holds the world together, and we have seen this demonstrated these past few days as we saw volunteers evacuating a nursing home, and families being air lifted from the roofs of their homes.

It is when we help those who cannot do anything in return that we truly give from our hearts.

This country needs to put their energy into finding solutions and having a dialogue that will create peace and not cause chaos and division.

Unfortunately, it takes a devastating tragedy to show us how capable we are of working together and solving problems. We need each other, because we are in this together.

I am so proud to be a Texan and so proud of those in the Rio Grande Valley who quickly rallied to help those in need.

It is during times like this that we see the human connection and the capacity for love and compassion that we are capable of.

Maria Luisa Salcines is a freelance writer, and certified parent educator with The International Network for Children and Families in Redirecting Children’s Behavior and Redirecting for a Cooperative Classroom. Follow her on Twitter @PowerOfFamily, Instagram mlsalcines or contact her on her blog