There have been different images in the past few months that paint an alarming picture of America.

Those images include the carnage in Virginia, where one person lost her life and others injured over an argument about the propriety of a historical statue — yes, one that some claim celebrates the charm and dignity of the United States’ Old South.

Others, who within reason, can claim those statues glorify the lives of men who fought to keep the shameful scourge of bigotry and slavery on the ground we all walk.

But there are other images, some just as terrible in a more immediate sense; yet, more heartening in the aftermath of hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

One of those images was of a woman in a retirement home in Dickinson. As the floodwaters rose, she sat in her chair and the photograph of her made national news. The better part of the story is that rescue workers found her and her fellow residents. The residents were taken to safety.

In August, a Unite the Right rally by white nationalists and other groups was meant to protest the planned removal of a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee in the city of Charlottesville, Va. They were met by counter-protesters. The nationalists clashed with the counter-protesters in the streets and a car plowed into crowds, leaving one person dead and 19 others injured.

The images that came out of Virginia were horrific.

In the aftermath of hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the images out of Texas and Florida were horrific. But what we did not see were police in riot gear. We saw police helping people be evacuated from flooded homes. We saw vehicles from numerous states, coming to Texas not to protest, but towing boats. They came to help.

There is something sad that statues can serve to tear us apart, but hurricanes bring us together.

• Dave Mathews

Dave Mathews: 409-683-5258; dave.mathews@galvnews.com

(17) comments

Charles Tucker

The statues were doing nothing, for good or ill. They are simple objects with no intent of their own. The people assembled In Virginia did the tearing apart. They chose sides and clashed. Harvey, despite being given a name, also lacked intent. What happened in the aftermath was that there were no sides. The only win was to make as many safe as possible.

When we chose sides some must lose. When the choice being made is that of saving anyone we can then there is no losing.

Jarvis Buckley

Charles I agree with your comment for the most part. But.... In my opinion when we turn our back on our history. We erase a lot of the rights & a lot of the wrongs that our
Youngsters could benifit from in guiding their lives as well as our country into the future.

Mark Aaron

Jarvis: "But.... In my opinion when we turn our back on our history. We erase a lot of the rights & a lot of the wrongs that our Youngsters could benifit from in guiding their lives as well as our country into the future."

Just what benefit do you expect youngsters to receive from a statue in the public square glorifying bigotry and racism Jarvis? How many statues of Hitler do expect to see in Germany? How many statues of Pol Pot in Cambodia?

Images of traitors and bigots belong in museums and books, not being glorified in our public spaces. Why do you want to exalt traitors and cruel racists Jarvis? Do you agree with them?

George Croix

Another factor is that natural disasters are real time events and there is an immediate need to preseve life and property. Good people don't worry about a litmus test before helping another in dire conditions.
There's no time for the easily influenced or hopelessly indoctrinated to dredge up the past and re-fight WWII or the Civil war or any other relic of the past that modern day haters can pretend to be part of.
The hat trick then becomes the fact that the part of media that is wont to create it's own news to drive it's own agenda simply cannot do so in a disaster - the ultimate apolitical event - while it's happening.....
imo

Mark Aaron

George: "Good people don't worry about a litmus test before helping another in dire conditions."

Tell that to the Texas Republicans who all voted against funding for Hurricane Sandy recovery.

"There's no time for the easily influenced or hopelessly indoctrinated to dredge up the past and re-fight WWII or the Civil war or any other relic of the past that modern day haters can pretend to be part of. "

So you think statues that glorify treason and racism should remain because you find it inconvenient George? Well aren't you special?

Charles Tucker

Did they vote against a clean bill, or a bill laden with pork projects, Mark? Why should conservatives vote to send money to pet causes instead of being allowed to vote on a clean bill? What if a bill is up for a vote that funds Harvey relief but also funds the Trump Wall? Will you castigate Dems who vote against such a bill which forces them to compromise on their principles?

Mark Aaron

Charles: "Did they vote against a clean bill, or a bill laden with pork projects, Mark?"

The Texas Republicans unquestionably showboated and demagogued the Hurricane Sandy bill. Head dipstick Ted Cruz went so far as to claim that 2/3 of the bill was pork, which easily duped Tea Partiers glommed on to and swore to be gospel. More objective media investigators found most everything in the final bill to be clearly relevant to the storm and its affects.

From Factcheck.org :

_The Washington Post Fact Checker looked at Cruz’s claim and found little in the Sandy relief bill that could be considered pork-barrel spending, or “local members of Congress spending on their pet projects,” as Cruz also said._

Doyle Beard

where is Robert Byrd and the other 16 democrats that fillibustered the 1964 Civil rights bill? phoney phoney

Mark Aaron

Doyle: "where is Robert Byrd and the other 16 democrats that fillibustered the 1964 Civil rights bill? phoney phoney "

Poor Doyle, reaching all the way back to the 1960's to try to find something relevant to say, and still missed.

Jarvis Buckley

Mark I can't go toe to toe with you. I just expressed my thoughts. You disagree which I knew you would but that's alright.

George Croix

Mr. Buckley, you do just fine with your posts, imo.
I look forward to seeing more of them...


Mark Aaron

Jarvis: "Mark I can't go toe to toe with you. I just expressed my thoughts. You disagree which I knew you would but that's alright."

Sure you can Jarvis. Just keep telling yourself that. Let us know if you ever find any facts and credible sources to back them up. Pardon me if I don't hold my breath waiting.

Mark Aaron

Jarvis, my apologies, I misread your post this morning and replied inappropriately. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

Kelly Naschke

Once again Mark makes a fool of himself....I see a trend developing here....

Mark Aaron

Kelly: "Once again Mark makes a fool of himself....I see a trend developing here...."

At least I have the ability to apologize when I make a mistake. Too bad you can't. That's the thing with ideologues, you are trapped by your ignorance. So sad.

Jarvis Buckley

All is fair in love & war. Apologies accepted. While I respect your knowledge I disagree with your ideology .

Mark Aaron

I hope you are feeling well.

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