After a week in the Gulf, we’ve really become immersed in the community and the crisis that it’s facing. We’ve witnessed a significant impact that is felt by almost everyone here and the scary part is that we’re really at the farthest most reaches of the spill at this point. If the effects are so strong on the fringe, I can’t yet imagine how strong they’ll be closer to the spill site.
As time goes forward, that fringe point will expand down the Florida coast to the Keys and further beyond. The anxiety and fear that places like Destin are now feeling will permeate communities along the coast so long as the oil remains in the water and on the beaches. That fear will likely turn into reality in many towns like it has in places like Louisiana and Alabama. Tourists will cancel or stay away and all of the communities along the Gulf will suffer. Will reimbursement and compensation ease this suffering? Some, for sure; in the end businesses can survive if they’re made financially whole again. But you can’t quantify the disruption that may very well occur in so many peoples’ lives and the suffering that would accompany the destruction of their most precious and beloved resource.