Wah, OK? Move on.

Posted in MainPage at 9:56 pm by admin

Two years ago a hurricane, Katrina, pounded the gulf coast of Louisiana and pretty much obliterated the town of New Orleans. Many people died. Many people lost their homes. Many people lost everything.

In the days that followed, the media had a feeding frenzy. I personally watched as reporters speculated about rampant murder, theft and rape taking place in emergency housing areas that were set up to save lives. As yet, not one single shread of evidence supports those claims. The rumors were reported, live, on respected, national news programs as NEWS! I have never been more disgusted with the free press than I was that day. Still amid this strife and loss of property and lives, the news had time to second guess any and every attempt made to protect property and people by FEMA. The director of FEMA stepped down over the affair.

He was probably (almost certainly) an incompetent political appointee to an office that does very little unless it is badly needed. He just had the misfortune of an emergency while he was at the helm. Too bad for him.

The point that seems to have been lost in all of this is, all of the events surrounding Katrina could have been avoided if people didn’t steadfastly refuse to move. New Orleans is in the middle of a hurrican shooting gallery. People shouldn’t be there if they cannot afford stone-clad housing above the 100yr flood levels. Hell, half the city was below sea-level before Katrina hit. Of course it was going to be a disaster. It appears to have been almost designed as a disaster.

This is not to say that I believe there was some vast right-wing conspiracy to wipe out the leftist stronghold of The Big Easy. Proponents of such theorys credit the vast right-wing conspiritors with far more compentence than they deserve or demonstrate quite publicly and repeatedly.

Now to my point: Rather than honor the dead and displaced with some annual hug-fest about how terrible the whole affair was, why don’t we honor them by making sure that sort of disaster isn’t repeated when the next big hurricane hits. Move away from the shooting gallery. If you rebuild, don’t do it below sea-level. If you rebuild, rebuild something that can withstand 140+ MPH winds. Tighten the building code. Close down the trailor parks. Condemn and tear down any building that survived if it is not at least 5 feet above mean sea-level. Make, as a condition of relief funds, that people must rebuild in an area not on a flood plain.

I sympathize with those who lost friends, family and other loved ones. In spite of that, I must point out that this could have been avoided if people just watched the weather channel during hurricane season. The time to cry is over, rebuild, but relocate first.

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