The catastrophic flooding in Houston following Hurricane Harvey is showing how social media can be beneficial. For one, social networks have magnified the work done by rescue workers and private citizens who are volunteering. As of 8:49 PM on the east coast, #CajunNavy is trending on twitter. The “Cajun navy” are private citizens who are using their personal watercraft to rescue stranded flood victims. All day we’ve seen pictures and images of selflessness like this on a grand scale.
It’s not like this hasn’t happened before. Our history is full of neighbors helping neighbors following a catastrophe regardless of race, religion, or background. From 9/11 to Houston, Americans band together in times of crisis.
While social media is an excellent tool for magnifying these courageous people, it’s real value has been demonstrated today with how much it has helped with rescue efforts.
All day people have been tweeting out the locations of stranded loved ones and their needs.
Could someone rescue my father in law who is 78 and his wife who is 80 at 6843 heath street HOUSTON tx. His name is Charles Guidry sr.
— Redonda Guidry (@GuidryRedonda) August 27, 2017
8427 Kellet street Houston Texas 77028. 72 year old woman and disabled man who needs meds and food please help !!!! https://t.co/iOlaTqnUIc
— 🌈 (@briannalei_) August 27, 2017
My family is still waiting for a water rescue in the attic, they can't get to roof! 6606 Reamer St
Houston, TX 77074
— ♡erryn meryl (@AlyxandriaErryn) August 27, 2017
This is quite honestly the best use of social media I’ve ever seen. Just imagine if social networks were this big during Katrina, it could have made a big difference.
People, including those with platforms, have also been tweeting out phone numbers for emergency services all day along with instructions for victims.
— The Reagan Battalion (@ReaganBattalion) August 27, 2017
If u have family there tell them: stay off rods, turn off electricity, go to roof. DO NOT go to attic w/o axe to escape:
EMERGENCY NUMBERS: pic.twitter.com/ks4lBo1raU
— Mikel Jollett (@Mikel_Jollett) August 27, 2017
I’m not really a fan of social media, but today I was forced to rethink my opinion.