Snowstorm Sheds Light on Disparities

Reagan Witkowski, Editor

By now, Friscoians have moved past the miraculous snow storm that occurred about a month ago. Days of rolling blackouts and pipes bursting were the talk of the Nightly News, along with sledding and building snowmen. But, as Frisco ISD returns from our two-week covid-like break, North Texas communities are still trying to recover, and it’s disproportionately affecting Black and Latino communities.

This isn’t the first time a natural disaster has unequally affected communities of color-  Hurricane Katrina and Maria, the Water Crisis of Flint, MI, and even the COVID-19 outbreak are all examples of this. These communities aren’t given the proper tools to survive during these unpredictable natural disasters. These communities are continuously unequally affected because of racism, systematic bias, and the country’s anti-poverty mindset. 

The American dream was envisioned with the idea that anyone could come to America and attain their meaning of success and have better success in America than they did in their previous country. But, our government hasn’t provided the tools to achieve any form of success to immigrants, which ultimately leads to poverty. While writing this article, I wanted to make sure I was writing the correct information, so I googled ‘poorest cities in each state.” Business Insider did the research for me, and going through this list is disheartening. Selma, Alabama, Camden, Arkansas, and Clearlake, California are just a few examples of diverse neighborhoods being unequally affected by poverty. 

But, to keep it local, South Dallas was struck extremely hard by the snowstorm. WFAA, a local news station for the North Texas area, posted a youtube video showing the number of volunteers needed to help support the South Dallas community during the storm. It’s amazing that some people took time out of their day to help the less fortunate, but why didn’t anyone in Dallas help prepare the community for the snowstorm. Now, in March, pipes are still not fixed, and houses are destroyed from the snow damage. I can’t help but believe that our elected officials failed us, and failed South Dallas more so. 

I believe it’s necessary to put your privilege in perspective. Yes, we were extremely fortunate to have two weeks off from school and rolling blackouts for three days, but we live in Frisco. ERCOT deemed our area more important than South Dallas, so we received power and electricity before them. We were struggling through those three days; our houses were cold, but at least we had a home. It’s frustrating to see friends complaining like the world was going to end, we aren’t the ones to be concerned about.