Wednesday, February 08, 2006

America to Katrina victims: "Go away, you aren't our problem anymore"

Iraq vs. Katrina

I just wanted to do my small part to keep the Katrina battered south coast in the public eye today as the cut-off for federal aid looms near and permanent housing arrangements haven’t been worked out for many.

"All I got is a couple pairs of pants and some shirts. The pressure is on," said Jonathan Gautier, 26, one of the six, who was also carrying a single plastic bag filled with clothes.”

"As he moved out his belongings, Melvin Robinson, 40, said he did talk to a FEMA representative by phone and was told he didn't qualify for an extension of his hotel stay because the agency is paying apartment rent for his family in Dallas, and wouldn't support two residences for the family. Robinson, a Regional Transit Authority bus driver, said he must be in New Orleans to keep his job but has no place to bring his family. "When I tried to get an extension, the FEMA lady on the phone, she was so unruly, she said, 'That's not my problem,'..."Everybody says 'Come back, come back.' There's no place for us to stay," he said.

Issues about which areas to rebuild and which to demolish are still being worked out and many of the promised trailers and other, more permanent housing solutions are caught up in red tape.

On a personal level, I was never surprised with the often appalling conduct of America’s war in Iraq. The American government (especially the current administration) has shown time and time again that its support of foreign democracies and peoples tends to be selective at best, but to treat their own citizens this way reaches a new low.

I don’t often give to disaster charities, not because of conviction, more often because I’m hardly making ends meet myself but I did donate to Katrina relief. I spent as much as I could afford with that one, giving to the Red Cross about 3 days after the hurricane because I knew right away that Bush was going to treat this one like he does nearly everything else, just look away and hope everyone forgets.

The gulf coast needs a distinct plan for recovery, not more empty promises and platitudes, and watching Bush talk about Iraq in the SOTU (while spending less than a minute on the gulf coast) after all these years of mixed results and outright failure, I realized that’s all he has…


Blogger Chief RZ said...

Most Katrina victims have already moved and got back to their lives months ago. Given the chance, some others would continue to live in motels, at taxpayer expense forever. The issue here is personal responsibility versus "victimhood": freedom and democracy vs. communism.

12:02 PM, February 09, 2006  
Blogger Timmah420 said...

That's funny, considering that there's plenty of places with nothing left to go back to still and plenty of places that are in limbo as to what will be demolished and what will be kept.

Then there's the fact that tens of thousands of people aren't getting answers on where their trailers are, the ones promised to them 6 months ago.

Take Louisiana, where 60 percent of the 90,000 requests for manufactured housing have not been met. Of the 21,000 requests in Orleans Parish alone, about 3,000 have been filled as of FEB 9th 2006.

But it's Communism to keep these people holed up in a motel while the government gets its shit together. Sure.

I would think that after the piss poor initial response to the hurricane, that would be the least that could be done, if for no other reason than to make up for the Bush+Browne+Local govt clusterfuck.

So hear that recently homeless, broke and jobless evacuees? Get over yourselves and move on. Get a job or something, goddam hippies!

12:17 PM, February 09, 2006  

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