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September 1, 2005

More Katrina Coverage You Might Have Missed

Did you know that rapes have occurred in refugee areas?
"Superdome: Haven Quickly Becomes an Ordeal," by Joseph Treaster in NYT
"Trapped in an Arena of Suffering," by Scott Gold in LAT

Did you know that New Orleans is probably the largest Superfund site in the U.S.?

"This is the worst case," Hugh B. Kaufman, a senior policy analyst at the Environmental Protection Agency, said of the toxic stew that contaminates New Orleans. "There is not enough money in the gross national product of the United States to dispose of the amount of hazardous material in the area."
From "Extraordinary Problems, Difficult Solutions" by Guy Gugliotta and Peter Whoriskey in WaPo

I am terribly saddened by the events that have taken place recently. I realize that while a natural disaster occurred, its severity and aftermath are human creations. That is, human pollution has created global warming that caused the marshlands around New Orleans to be submerged; U.S. government officials chose not to fund modernization of the levees surrounding New Orleans; the U.S. government chose not to evacuate the poorest citizens of New Orleans out of the city before the hurricane hit; the U.S. government chooses to spend more money occupying Iraq and Afghanistan and arming the Israeli military than it chooses to spend on FEMA and disaster relief.

It takes a lot of nerve for the president to stand before the citizens of these United States and tell us that we need to dig into our own pockets to pay for disaster relief when somehow our government coffers are big enough to pay for an illegal war across the world. I am scared to go to a gas station - fearing the cost of gas - and grateful that I am able to take public transportation to and from work. I am scared to see what my next energy bills will be for my studio apartment, and grateful that I use fans instead of an energy-sucking air conditioner. I am scared for the safety and well-being of my fellow Americans throughout the Gulf region, and I pray for their survival and eventual return to a safe life (perhaps in other cities).

I pray for peace with justice for us in the United States and for everyone on Earth.

Posted by cj at September 1, 2005 10:40 PM


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