Monday, April 13th, 2020
We managed to escape the severe weather outbreak that made lives especially tough for Georgians in the northwest of the state and south and a bit east of the city. There was, however, a moment when a radar-spotted Tornado Warning was issued just south and west of the Atlanta airport at 2:15-ish in the morning—aimed in our direction—that gave us pause and had us (quite) prepared for a quick descent to shelter. It spared the metro, however, for the most part, and by 3 am or so we were back upstairs trying to get some sleep. For the most part, we had WSB meteorologists Brad Nitz and Glenn Burns on the TV and/or iPad with the updates, although we thought that Jennifer Valdez with Ella Dorsey at CBS46 and Chris Holcomb and Chesley McNeill at whatever WXIA is now (their branding just confuses me at this point) all handled the cascade of bad weather professionally.
This is one of those scenarios where the science—the computer models—gave meteorologists a well-defined several-day advance warning about what was going to happen, and it was up to the on-camera people gives us that super-advanced heads up, and then warn us again, and then continue to update the information they were getting through the evening to let us know whether it was pretty much happening as the model(s) predicted (it was) and to soberly get people to take urgent action when appropriate (which I think in these days of doubters can be a real challenge.)
Which of course is what we’re still up against in the Coronavirus-ravaged towns of South Dakota, where the governor thinks she knows better than the experts, mayors, and others who are begging—pleading—for a shutdown order. I think it’d be great if we could pass, oh, I dunno, maybe a constitutional amendment that says, by default, believe the science. I’m not a constitutional law teacher like our last president so I have no idea how you turn that sentiment into something worthy of carving in granite, but it would be great if we could do so.