The Great Western New York Storm

It’s easy to become world-weary and cynical given all the headlines showcasing political crapola, war-mongering monsters, societal fracturing, fatuous celebrities, inordinate commercialism, natural and unnatural disasters, etc. But once in a while, and happily so, a wonderful story featuring human decency rises to the surface to remind us of our fundamental interconnectedness as Gaians, to remind us that we are so much more than the completely made-up bunkum of this -ism or that -ism as we all ride together through space and time on our mother the Earth.

There are many stories circulating in our local news media about how people have pitched in to help friends, relatives, and complete strangers through the hardships of this nightmarish storm. Here’s just one of those stories, a two minute account of inspiring human beings, that serves as an example of the best of what we have to offer each other.

My wife and I are just now emerging from the bullseye of the worst winter storm I can remember in Western New York, and I’ve lived through some real doozies over the last 75 years, believe me. Our house is still surrounded by 5 to 6 foot drifts, but my driveway, which was packed with heavy, waist-deep snow was cleared yesterday by a local building contractor who showed up with a big high-lift wheel loader to help our neighborhood dig out thanks to someone who knew someone else. None of us could have moved those tons of snow on our own because its depth and weight pretty much rendered snowthrowers useless, and as far as shoveling out by hand–forget about it!

Through the stories of generosity and compassion that have emerged from the misery of this disastrous storm, we relearn once again that the appearance of division and dissociation among us is the ugly manifestation of a lie manufactured by those who profit from it. We are under no obligation to believe or tolerate that lie. Nor should we.

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