The Unauthorized Biography of Rosco P. Coltrane

When it's my moment in the sun, I won't forget that I am blessed, but every hero walks alone, thinking of more things to confess

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Location: Owensboro, Kentucky, United States

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Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Humanity

These are hands that are in need. These are hands of one of God's children.

Douglas R. Clifford from the St. Petersburg Times took this photo in New Orleans of a 40 year old woman after being stranded for two days in the floods left from hurricane Katrina. Somehow it is both beautiful and heartbreaking at the same time.

I have been watching the news all night, MSNBC and Fox News mostly. The news cycle has gone from the devastation left in the hurricane's wake to the relief and help efforts, and finally now, to the looters and some thugs that are now walking around the city of New Orleans with AK47's. They showed people walking and searching for lost loved ones. The word that the TV people kept on using was "Humanity."

All night long I have been contemplating what exactly that word means. I looked it up, but Webster's didn't really help me out that much.

In fact, it was a picture on MSNBC that made me realize what humanity.

It was a picture of a dead body half sunken next to a shopping cart. The only thing I could think was, wow, that looks just like the movies. And I felt ashamed for thinking that.

Humanity is simply this, it is the lack of grace that we, as humans, show each other. It is uncompassion. It is hurt, pain and death surrounding us. It is looting. It is price gouging people who had have nothing left except the shirts on their backs. It is every man for himself. It is humans at their basic animal instincts, uncaring, selfish and sinful.

(Sidenote: Please do not misconstrue my use of sinful to mean that somehow the people of New Orleans and South Mississippi are being punished because I don't believe that. Though, I have been wondering and waiting for someone to get on TV and say that the reason why New Orleans was hit with a hurricane is because of Bourbon St. and casino gambling. It is my hope that no religious leader gets up on national TV and scolds and chastises people that are searching for a warm place to stay and some clean water with words from the book of Genesis.)

Romans 8:3 (MSG) says that when Jesus became human, he "entered the disordered mess of struggling humanity."

I think struggling and disordered mess pretty much sum up the last few days.

I feel very helpless in all this mess. I see pictures and I want to help these people. I want my tears that work their way out to somehow take away some of their pain. And I cry more tears because I know I cannot take away any of their pain.

My tears won't help, I hope my prayers will help out.

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