In a matter of hours, an awesome and terrifying force of Nature, Hurricane “Irma” will batter Florida. Like another deadly storm twenty-five years earlier, Andrew, this one has a bead on southern Florida – yet the entire Atlantic coastline and perhaps some of the Gulf along the Panhandle may suffer. This storm has already obliterated some of the eastern Caribbean islands including Barbuda, and damaged Puerto Rico and is heading toward the mainland. Potentially, a large swath of human activity will be reduced to rubble and debris. A week earlier Hurricane Harvey churned into the Gulf Coast of Texas and Louisiana and dumped a record four feet of rain, flooding cities and towns and creating tens of thousands of people needing shelter. With Irma yet to make landfall in the continental U.S., the toll in property and on lives is not yet known. And then there is a third storm, Jose, which may follow his siblings from the western Atlantic and into the Caribbean behind Irma and Harvey.
With the passage of millennia, the ability to prepare for the predictable storm season, and to track storms through technology has saved countless lives. And if not able to accurately predict when or where an earthquake will strike, systems are being improved to give adequate warning – and to survive. One thing is certain, in times of crisis, our community of nations does manage to put aside animosities and rivalries and provide assistance to those in need.
Except some Hollywood actors. I heard today that actress Jennifer Lawrence thinks hurricanes are the byproduct of Donald Trump’s election. Sounds a bit like some movie she might have acted in – man-made natural forces controlled by a dictator. Perhaps Hollywood can offer a virgin for sacrifice – which is how some ancient cultures attempted to appease the Natural forces threatening them. However, it wouldn’t work with these bloviating types – no virgins to be found.
The world should join in prayer to protect and to relieve those now suffering and for those in harm’s way.