Thursday, September 01, 2005

Angry as hell

I am posting again today because I have turned from sad and upset, to very fucking angry. I will argue to my grave that the people in New Orleans who have been forsaken by our government, have been neglected because they are poor and because they are black. Yes, there was a mandate to leave the city. I would be able to get in my car and drive away, to a hotel room, or to family. But, if I don't have the money to own a car, to rent a car, or to pay for a hotel room, what the hell am I supposed to do? Many did exactly as they were told, go to the convention center, go to the dome. And then what? Leave them there to rot with no food, water, sanitation or medicine? Michael Brown, the director of FEMA, sees this as partly their own fault. What are they guilty of Michael, being poor? Or being "other"?If this had happened in a middle class white city there is no way in hell you would even try to blame the people who are hurting the most. Damn you. And damn your agency for not being there last weekend to offer rides to people without access. If a category 5 hurricane is coming towards a city whose levees are build to withstand a category 3 storm, our government should be hauling the most needy out. Before the storm, not after. And what about those people in hospitals Mr. Brown? What in God's name were they supposed to do?

Now, don't anyone even try to tell me that "there are people rioting, we can't help them." There are selected pockets of people behaving poorly. There are thousands of people doing exactly what they were told. Sit and wait. Get the military in there yesterday to restore order and get people help. If my baby was starving and dehydrated you know my ass will be stealing whatever shit I can to feed it. And so would you too, so quit your damn judging.

There was a reporter at the convention center today showing the beyond desperate state people are in. He was with Harry Connick Jr. who was promising these people help. How the fuck can Harry Connick Jr. get to these people and the US government cannot? Maybe Mr. Bush, Mr Connick can go find Osama for you.

I am embarrassed of my government. I am ashamed of how we are turning our back on our most needy. Money is being raised. People are being overly generous. But people are dying right now, and our government is blaming them.

Sweet land of liberty.

3 comments:

LiquiDiamonds said...

I can understand your angst. What I can't understand is how this is exclusively the Federal Government's Fault. I blame FIRST and FORMEOST the Governor of Louisiana...

I listeded to "this American Life" of NPR yesterday, and was disgusted to hear what was done to a group of tourists, who were largely people of color, and the horror of those trapped in New Orleans and given false info and no help. Listening to these first hand accounts left me with the sickening feeling that there really is no room at the inn for folks of color outside of New Orleans. Shame on the surrounding cumminties that kept those people from literally crossing a bridge to the "Better" part of town shame on their police, and shame shame shame on the Governor for not responding to a cirsis at the outset.

When the hurricane's path looked as if it was headed for the Florida Keys, the Governor ordered an evacuation. The storm never came through in force, but most folks left...why no evacuation order from Louisiana? Better that you get people pissed at having to leave on a false alram that angry and broken spirited at being abandoned.

Even now, there are conflicting reports from the Gov. of LA...shoot to kill, no shoot to kill, mandatory evacuation, no mandatory evacuation, forced evacuation, no foreced evacuation. How is that the Fed's fault? If the Fed Gov stepped in, ther would be an outvry from everyone about how the President is exerting too much controll over the state -but that's what is needed right now.

I'm disguested at the whole mess, really. I will never ever visit New Orleans on my own dime. If I am forced to go there for work (as I have had to a few times of the past few years) i will NOT spend a dime there if I can help it.

LiquiDiamonds said...

sorry about the tpyos....i guess I'm all whipped up!

number4of5 said...

I never said that Louisiana was in the clear. The "fault" here can be found with countless organizations, and the people that lead them. Again, I believe that there is something wrong with our government when the head of our Emergency Management organization does not see that some people are unable to provide their own transportation.

I also believe that we hold some responsibility here as well. For too long we, as a society, have turned our back and ignored the problems that poverty causes in our own country. Do we care that our low income school systems are a joke? Or do we just keep playing the blame game, passing the responsibility onto someone else. We failed the children of New Orleans a long time ago, and now they are grown and living in poverty, unable to escape their own lives- nevermind a hurricane. We are responsible for that.