Here’s a secret about Oklahoma City that I wonder if the New York Times and other national news outlets could ever pick up on while they cover the horrible aftermath of the May 20 tornado in Moore, Okla.: It’s a big place out there.
Oklahoma City encompasses more than 600 square miles in all, including the little burbs and towns that overlap and intersect with it. There are parts of town and sides of town — and with those descriptions come all the standard American psychic and actual boundaries of sentimentality, loyalty, school districts, train tracks, rivers, interstates, race, class, tax assessments. These distinctions fall completely away in times of need and disaster, especially tornadoes. People care and people help. But those boundaries are patched up and reconstructed when it’s over, like everything else.