In the last two weeks, Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have ravaged Texas, Louisiana, Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. The death toll from Hurricane Harvey sits at 60 at least. The monetary damage from these two disasters are staggering as well, with low estimates being in the tens of billions. These terrible events have shown the incredible resilience of the American people, with massive amounts of clean up support and monetary donations flowing in to help the relief efforts. But unfortunately, some could not pass up this opportunity to put blame on the misfortune.
During an interview, while on tour promoting her new movie “Mothers”, Jennifer Lawrence was asked about the hurricanes. She started by questioning voters of the last election stating, “It's also scary to know that climate change is due to human activity, and we continue to ignore it, and the only voice that we really have is through voting”. The interviewer reminded her that the last presidential election was less than a year ago in which she responded, “And we voted and it was really startling.” Shortly after came the comment that left many people appalled and angry; “You know, you're watching these hurricanes now, and it's really hard, especially while promoting this movie, not to feel mother nature's rage and wrath.”
I suppose the argument she was trying to make is that climate change caused these hurricanes, and, since the Trump Administration is handling climate change much differently than the Obama Administration, he and his supporters are to blame? So evidently the 8 months President Trump has been in power has been worse on climate change than the last 300 years of industrialization? I think what Jennifer Lawrence fails to realize is comments like this shutout and alienate many people. It’s not a far reach to say Lawrence’s comments further target President Trump and his supporters because every state affected by these hurricanes voted for him in the election. I don’t believe anyone wants the world to collapse into disarray due to climate change. But there are certain issues that shouldn’t be polarized. I think a natural disaster that has affected millions of people is a time when politics should take a back seat. I think the most important thing to do now is to mourn the victims and rebuild the communities that have been destroyed.
For every Jennifer Lawrence out there, there’s a J.J. Watt. J.J. is an NFL player who plays for the Houston Texans. Instead of blaming these hurricanes on anyone, he started an incredible fundraising effort that has raised over $31 million. This unbelievable outcome has come from lots of hard work and determination by Watt. He was welcomed as an absolute hero during the Texans season opening game, and a hero he is.
Hollywood elitists don’t represent the United States of America. I won’t speak for anyone else, but I am tired of elitists telling us how to live our lives, who to vote for, and now who to blame for natural disasters. Thankfully, I don’t think I am the only one who feels this way, and the incredible outpouring of love and support that has been demonstrated for the victims of these hurricanes is far outweighing the negativity in politics. I hope instead of placing blame on these events, we can come together to rebuild the lives of the many who were affected.
In case you didn’t know, President Trump donated $1 million of his personal money to help the recovery efforts in Texas. That’s a great display of care and leadership if you ask me. Your move, Jennifer.
Alexander Grzelak is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.