Sunday, September 04, 2005

Katrina Responses

I am overwhelmed by the natural disaster of Katrina, the human tragedy of its victims and the combination of heroism and folly, extraordinary effort and apparent laziness in the responses of both victims and responders. My friend Jim Miller expresses frusteration equivalent to mine. The mayor, governor and president ordered evacuation and attempted to get people to carry it out. Many people chose to stay when they were capable of leaving. Some could not. Now there was provision to shelter a few thousand who were hard to relocate. But the facilites were overwhelmed by numbers increased by those who could have left. And furthermore, the Superdome was chosen as a shelter for its strength against the hurricane. NOT for the flooding and the extended stay it required. Low lights Jesse Jackson, who claims to be a reverend, looks only at race. Race baiting made him rich. But I don't care what JJ declares since he got caught spending donations to his nonprofit to pay for his mistress's house.
And he also criticized the role given to former presidents George Bush senior and Bill Clinton as coordinators for a fund raising effort following the Katrina tragedy, similar to their role as tsunami fund raisers. "Why are there no African Americans in that circle?" Jackson asked. "How can blacks be left out of the leadership and trapped into the suffering
Mike Fancher, the reader's representative at the Seattle Times thinks that it is incredibly brave to carry a notebook and ask questions. The herioc reporter is a first responder taking notes while others are saving lives. Oh. Mixed Errol Lewis of the New York Daily News considers the people to still under slavery!!
That hard, unsympathetic view is the traditional American response to the poverty, ignorance and rage that afflict many of us whose great-great-grandparents once made up the captive African slave labor pool.
Then he points out the ugly facts on the corruption that the people of New Orleans and Louisiana have allowed.
These government failures are not merely a matter of incompetence. Louisiana and New Orleans have a long, well-known reputation for corruption: as former congressman Billy Tauzin once put it, "half of Louisiana is under water and the other half is under indictment." That's putting it mildly. Adjusted for population size, the state ranks third in the number of elected officials convicted of crimes (Mississippi is No. 1). Recent scandals include the conviction of 14 state judges and an FBI raid on the business and personal files of a Louisiana congressman.... The rot included the New Orleans Police Department, which in the 1990s had the dubious distinction of being the nation's most corrupt police force and the least effective: the city had the highest murder rate in America. More than 50 officers were eventually convicted of crimes including murder, rape and robbery; two are currently on Death Row.
Can they expect a full-faith effort from the politicians, bureaucrats and police who have gotten away with allowing such a mess? Of course not. I am praying for the people displaced, injured, sick, victims of looting. And for the responders sent in to help.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You are such a joke. Democratic raid on the treasury? After what Bush has done to our deficit? I've yet to find words to describe the degree of contempt for people like you. You make me sick. The only people that make me sicker are the Democratic senators that refuse to stand up your GOP gangsters. Get bent, man!