Sophomore Speaks: Students grow selfish from no power

They say a picture is worth a thousand words; however, the pictures of Seaside’s Casino Pier in the ocean, the sand in the streets of Belmar and the houses underwater in the Barrier Islands were worth millions. Houses, landmarks and memories are all swept away in the blink of an eye.
As I browsed my newsfeed on Facebook in attempts to keep up with what was going on, I noticed a trend growing among my friends. There were countless statuses about the lack of power to their houses and how much they hated being without it.
To be quite honest, I had never been so angry. They were all complaining about their power being out for several days when there are still people out there who are currently living in shelters because everything they knew and loved was lost. For many on Facebook, power was the only thing lost to their homes in the storm.
Every time I read another complaint, I just wanted to tell them all one thing: Be thankful that that’s the only thing wrong with your house. There are people in our state who are now suddenly homeless and have absolutely nothing to their name. Everything they once knew is now gone. How is that fair?
Even at night when I listened to our battery-operated radio, people were constantly calling in, complaining about the lack of power and how crews weren’t working fast enough for them. I felt disgusted that power was all these people cared about.
After listening to dozens of phone calls and complaints on the radio, I was just about done with it. However, a man from Seaside Heights made a call to the station. This man explained that his house no longer exists — it was washed away in the storm along with everything he had ever owned. Through tears he told listeners to be grateful that they weren’t in his shoes and all they had to worry about was their power coming back on while he had to start his entire life over. I couldn’t even begin to wrap my head around what it would like to be in his situation.
This storm taught me not to take things for granted. It wasn’t the end of the world that the power was off for a week. That was something we could all easily deal with. You could never get your house, possessions or family back if you were one of the people who lost everything.
All I ask is that you think about others who were not as lucky as you were during this storm and be thankful that power was the only thing you lost. Appreciate what you have and think of others less fortunate than you.

-Danielle Gittleman
Sophomore journalism major

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