According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, last week’s outbreak of tornadoes across the southern part of the country totaled around 312 tornadoes in all. The storm makes it one of the worst in U.S. history, breaking the previous record of 226 tornadoes in one 24-hour period.
Last week, President Obama went to Alabama to see first hand the devastation caused by the storms. As he walked through the rubble and destroyed homes, he sought to assure local communities that their government had not forgotten them.
“I want to just make a commitment to the communities here that we are going to do everything we can to help these communities rebuild…property damage, which is obviously extensive, that’s something that we can do something about.”
According to latest reports, an estimated 334 people lost their lives due to the storms that hit between 8:00 am and 9:00pm last Wednesday and Thursday. While there is no doubt of the devastation, the importance of this story has taken a backseat to other major news stories. And even though we are often quick to blame the news media for bumping valuable stories for fluff, this week has proven a particularly difficult challenge.
Up first, Osama Bin Laden’s capture at the hand of U.S. Special Forces. Up next, Donald Trump, the birthers and President Obama’s response. Between those two stories alone, the story of how strongly parts of the southeast have been hit by this natural disaster seems to be taking second billing.
Having friends who have had their property damaged and hearing stories of those who have lost their businesses, their homes and their loved ones, I can’t help but sympathize, but I also recognize the very real fact that media is more than a public service, it’s a business.
What do you think of the lack of coverage on the storms effect in the south Clutchettes- injustice or expected? Share your thoughts!