Comments: A pack, not a herd

Some very good points made on the conduct of the American public in diasaster situations.I would just like to contrast the responses of the 'civilized" Europeons during one. ..The sinking of that Swedish(if my memory serves me right)ferry about a decade ago comes to mind. if you remember it,the front vehicle loading doors got battered in by waves...There were many disgraceful stories coming out afterwards about how people were stepping on women and children to get to lifeboats and rescue gear.The one I remember most is of a women with a broken leg on the deck crying for help,and being walked on by people who just ignored her......And a recent story in the Vancouver Sun about how Canadian attitudes are much more "Europeon" then American just made me feel sad and disgusted.I don't really feel anything in common with the peoples who brought the world such delights as "ethnic cleansing",concentration camps(English first,I know),pogroms ,and TWO,count em,two world wars.

Posted by big al at July 3, 2005 04:53 PM

Canada may be far less European than they think, big al. People here aren't quite at the point of waiting passively for the "authorities" to handle crisis.

I remember the August, 2003, blackout quite well and the city dwellers in Toronto not only coped but, in the best North American spirit of self-sufficiency and optimism, turned it around to make lemonade.

Citizens directed traffic, checked on elderly neighbours both in homes and in high rises, and had community barbecues and block parties. We stargazed, howled at the moon, and went for family walks.

Whenever I start to despair about this city I remember that experience. When the chips were down we pulled together, and I hope the lessons from that experience endure!

Posted by Debbye at July 3, 2005 05:09 PM