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When the Levee breaks, I’ve got no place to stay…

9 September 2005

Okay, I’ve been avoiding blogging on this, because it’s all over the media and I really didn’t know what else I could add, or say, that hasn’t been said already, and honestly, I didn’t want to live in that place to intensely for too long. The thought of the suffering in New Orleans brings me to tears every single time I contemplate it. I think of all the people who lost their homes, their possessions, their loved ones and their lives, and I feel that whatever petty problems that we in the drier parts of the country think we have, it cannot compare with the immediate suffering of those down in the Big Easy. I’ve thought of those who were caught in NOLA when the levees broke, and how they didn’t have the money to get out of town before the storm, or anywhere to go if they did decide to leave, so they stayed and suffered the plight of being corralled into large buildings and left to live like dogs for days without food or water. I think of children not eating or drinking, of being raped. I think of murders and general lawlessness. I think of hopelessnes, and I think of a police force that is overstrapped and freaking out, unable to handle the pressures of what they’re experiencing. I think of scores of corpses in the streets. I think of stagnant nasty polluted water that is dangerous to even breathe near, much less touch. I think of the administration’s total disconnect with the situation, and their inability to do the right thing because they’ve overcommitted in Iraq, and because they can’t make a right decision to save their lives. I think of Barbara Bush, and her completely insensitive remarks about how the hurricane was actually a good think for the poor of NOLA.

But you know what, I also think — hell, why don’t they just pick up their bags and just walk the fuck out of town? I mean, seriously. Stay in a concrete bunker and live like animals, or find your way to the nearest bridge and get the fuck out of town, right?

Well guess what — they weren’t allowed to leave. That’s right, as I dig deeper and deeper into this story, I’m seeing reports that people tried to leave on foot, but they were held back at gunpoint by the police in neighboring cities just across the bridges. People banded together, and gathered supplies, and tried to camp out on bridges and high ground, but the local police broke them up, divided them, and confiscated their food and water. It’s crazy. It’s the lowest form of hate and fear working, and here’s one account. It’s crazy.

I’m tired, and I’m losing coherence at this late hour, but I just needed to say — WTF?! Not only does the place flood like a fishbowl of toxic sludge, but unless you have a car, you’ve got to stay and stew in it. That’s all new levels of fucked-up.

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