Notes from the Wildfire in Southern California

…but already the politicians are out shilling in front of the camera. Senator Barbara Boxer flew in for an appearance and her brief statement surprised many San Diegans as she never recognized the firefighters. She was too busy back slapping fellow politicians and painting herself as our warrior in Washington.

Much of what she intends to send our way, would happen with or without her input. Boxer said that she was happy to see rising offshore winds that would help to lower humidity. Excuse me Senator, but low humidity has been a huge problem all along.

On Monday, our humidity level was a mere 3%; contributing to bone-dry conditions out here. Also, a shift in wind direction raises humidity but also puts communities like my own at risk; as active fires burn back on themselves. The Senator's hurried, misinformed statement left many of us completely uninspired.

On the TV circuit, democrats are trying hard to draw similarities to Hurricane Katrina. They toss out ill-conceived barbs that chastise the Bush Administration for not having enough National Guard troops on the domestic front to deal with national disasters. The number of troops on hand in San Diego handled the situation quite admirably, as there were only a few incidents of looting.

San Diego is not New Orleans. The number of evacuees affected by the Southern California wildfires dwarfs the number of Katrina evacuees. San Diego did not spiral down into utter chaos in spite of the size of the disaster. As a result, democrats can't find a way to seize on this issue.

Shameless, socialist-style democrats have no problem using the misfortune of thousands of Southern Californians to promote their special interest agendas. The problem is, they've completely missed the point that the rest of the nation has already noticed.

Here in San Diego we're not waiting for the federal government to come in and save the day. We the people took matters into our own hands and helped out our neighbors without hesitation. Californians not affected by the fire responded by helping out in any way they could. Nobody even thought about the government, we just pulled together and offered assistance to our neighbors.

Donations were so plentiful from average citizens that the Red Cross had to turn away supplies at Qualcom Stadium. We didn’t sit on our hands waiting for FEMA, we got the word out about who needed what and where it was needed and simply reached into our pockets and made it happen. Hey, Uncle Sam, we got it covered. If that wasn't enough, Southern Californians have already created several benefit funds and are contributing financially to our neighbors who have lost everything.

If there are fingers to be pointed, it's at the democrats and their cow-towing to strident environmentalists. Hard core environmentalists have strong-armed their way into the affairs of California by way of socialist legislators who are controlled with mega campaign dollars.

Legislation as dictated by the environmentalists prohibited the controlled burn of the dense underbrush that is fueling the wildfires. We all said this would happen and as it turns out we were right and the environmentalists were wrong again.

America has witnessed the fact that not all Californians are fruits and nuts. We the people, in Southern California have proven that the 'can do' American spirit is alive and well. We've shown by our actions that Americans instinctively know how to step up to a challenge when they're called to do so. We don't wait around for the federal government, we just take care of business. It's the American way.

The real heroes out here in California are the firefighters. In the early hours of firestorm winds gusted up to 80 and 100 miles an hour. Visibility was low and the smoke was black and dense. The air was toxic to breathe and that's a condition that never improves. These brave men and women stayed on the line often for more than 24 hours fighting against a wall of raging flames. They went without eating or sleeping; they pushed past their fatigue and fought on in horrendous, frightening conditions. They put their lives on the line for us. Their courage has humbled us all. There are no words grand enough to properly thank them, but I hope that they can see it in our eyes.

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