On the pages of this edition of the VOICE, you will find stories of how people in our community dealt with the hardships brought forth by Hurricane Sandy, but for many areas of our state the battle is far from over. As reported in Mariana Braz’s “Is This the New Normal,” Hurricane Sandy caused about 150 deaths, 9 million people with power outages, and 50 billion dollars in damages.
Some of our neighbors have felt the effects of Hurricane Sandy in ways we can barely imagine. There has been reported flooding of 7 feet in homes in the barrier-island towns. Residents were evacuated until Nov. 9 in many of these towns, some of which are still completely abandoned.
Many of the sites that once held the childhood memories of New Jerseyans are now underwater. Some are in the ocean–recently lost Atlantises. But sentimentality won’t get us very far. More than memories, these towns are the homes to many residents, human beings, neighbors. It’s important to give–give a dollar, lend a hand–so that our neighbors can get back to their lives and their homes.
Mercer County was mostly affected through power losses, which were widely dealt with in communal ways, like at the Princeton Public Library (see page 2).
The hurricane caused MCCC to shut down operations from Monday, October 29, through Thursday, November 2. According to an email sent from MercerMail Administrator to all Mercer students, this semester’s schedule will be extended until Friday, December 14, and final exams will be held from December 17-20.
“It’s tough for students because they lost that week,” said Anderson Monken, SGA president. Monken explained that work has stacked up for a lot of students since the storm.
According to Monken, the SGA will be holding fundraisers in the weeks following the storm, and giving funds to the Red Cross fund.
Students at MCCC have had their families directly affected by Sandy. Stephen Middleton, a Mercer who ran for SGA president last semester, has family in New York City. “My mom is still without power and heat,” he told The VOICE on Monday, November 5th, a week after Sandy passed through.
Monken’s family was without power for three days, and had a tree fall on their porch. “It felt like the whole world was turned upside-down,” he told The VOICE.
In some areas of New Jersey and New York the world still is upside down, and as people who fought through the storm it is our responsibility to continue to support those still in need even though things in our county are slowly starting to return to normal.
On the back page of this edition of the VOICE, you will not find the usual cartoons and horoscopes. Instead, we have listed some organizations that are working to get these communities back up and running.