A Conflagration
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 by Frank Shortt

Fire rushes up the burning hillside, destroying everything in its path. Outbuildings and homes are as matchsticks to this purveyor of wrath!

“Get out, Get out! Cried the Fire Captain! You must escape with your life” an elder gentleman refused to go and was consumed with everything material he had on earth. This seems to be the pattern in California from the north to the south. No one is immune to the far reaching conflagrations. “What, some folks ask, has California done to be visited by all these destructive blazes?” What will become of the recipients of all this desolation who are left with cottonmouths?

Entire small towns have been consumed as fire crews are, seemingly, unable to get a handle on all the different outbreaks! It does not seem possible that fire could spread through a whole town, going from house to house, with no way to check the ignitions!

One minister back east has suggested that California is being destroyed because of her liberal ways. But, is she any more wicked than the other cities back east who are visited by hurricanes and blizzards? Most large cities in America should try growing fruit instead of weeds! It seems that most governmental agencies are more talk than action!

My wife, Sharon, and I own a home in the Eldorado National Forest region. It has often been her conclusion that Forestry, both state and federal should begin cleaning up our forests. We both feel that an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure. As we went for a picnic and hike in the area of Leoni Meadows in the Eldorado Forest, we saw something very heartening: we saw huge areas of National forest being cleared of underbrush, dead trees, and removing some of the healthy trees to thin out the remaining forest.

When President Trump visited the devastated areas both North and South in California, he stated, “We are presently doing something about the thickness of the forests by having crews thin them out!” My wife and I saw this with our own eyes whether we agree or disagree with Mr. Trump! Should California do some repenting of her liberal ways? We can all begin by turning around from some of our bad policies!

Trump told Mr. Jerry Brown and Governor Elect, Gavin Newsome, “There is hope for all if we will begin to pull together instead of fighting!” I agree with this. We must begin to show some love and compassion for our fellow man, Democrat or Republican, or otherwise! We must let our hatreds become a blur! We must begin building up instead of tearing down. Instead of being down in the mouth, let’s use it for what it was intended for, smile a little!

I have been called an idealist! We are born with the nature we possess. If we all work together we can get a handle on all the destructive forces that we have in common. If we dam up the rivers, floods will eventually destroy our towns. If we allow the forests to overtake our properties, fire will eventually destroy us. Nothing that man does is lasting! If we do not take care of what we have been entrusted with, or if we do not take the cure for what ails us, how can we blame the prescriber if we die?

I have seen great response by those of California who were not affected personally by the fires. Now, if the Organizations with whom we entrusted our donations will use it for the purpose intended, then there should be plenty to go around for each family involved. Let’s hope this is so!

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