The Houston Chronicle’s editorial board on Monday slammed Donald Trump for his “abysmally ignorant” response to last year’s hurricane season, pointing to the president’s claim last week that up to “sixteen thousand people … went out in their boats to watch” Hurricane Harvey in 2017.
“So now we know: Thousands of heedless Houstonians were out pleasure-boating during that fateful Hurricane Harvey weekend and had to be rescued by U.S. Coast Guard sailors,” the Houston Chronicle’s editorial board wrote, explaining Trump spent a conference call last week complaining the Coast Guard didn’t “get enough credit” for the saves.
“The president seems to believe that the Coast Guard only rescues people at sea and that those bobbing boats he might have seen on cable news last August were foolish Houstonians seeking a little late-summer recreation in the face of impending mortal danger,” the board wrote, noting Trump seemed to suggest “gawkers” were “perhaps even deserving of the consequences of our own making.”
“Unfortunately, we’ve grown accustomed to bizarre Trumpian bloviations,” the editors added, reminding readers of Trump’s reported claim last week that Canada burnt down the White House during the War of 1812. The paper said “the president’s Hurricane Harvey inanity is too serious for Houstonians to let slide.”
‘A region still recovering from catastrophic flooding doesn’t need its plight minimized or ridiculed,” they wrote. “It needs help.”
The Houston Chronicle wondered “if the man in charge is abysmally ignorant about what happened” during Hurricane Harvey, who among other Trump appointees will be better prepared?
“The people of Puerto Rico, those who survived a hurricane that killed thousands, know something of the importance of political leadership,” the Houston Chronicle wrote. “They remember a president who responded to biblical devastation by tossing rolls of paper towels at them. They know how arrogance and ineptitude at the top can magnify a dire situation.”
“Show some leadership,” the editors urged. “Make us your priority, not your punchline.”