Badtux the Snarky Penguin

In a time of chimpanzees, I was a penguin.

Religious fundamentalists are motivated by the sneaking suspicion that someone, somewhere, is having fun -- and that this must be stopped.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Katrina survivors kicked out of hotels

FEMA yesterday evicted over 4,000 Katrina survivors from hotel rooms. Having utterly failed at finding trailers or trailer sites to house them back in Louisiana where they want to go and where they belong, apparently FEMA hopes that if they simply kick these people out on the street, they'll be stranded as homeless people in whatever city they're in and stop bothering FEMA.

Choice quote of the day is from the spokesman for the Mayor of Houston:

"People need to begin to take responsibility for themselves."

RIIIGHHHT! Because, you know, it's their own damned fault that the levees failed, instead of being the fault of the U.S. Army Corpse of Engineers, which, despite having been responsible for the levees for the past forty years, bears no responsibility for the defective poorly-designed levees that didn't even hold back a Category 2 hurricane. So the folks in the rest of the United States have no responsibility towards these people who are waiting until the levees are fixed well enough to make it safe to go back to Louisiana? Sounds to me like there's some people who need to take responsibility too, and those people are not from Louisiana.

The rest of the United States wants the benefits of Louisiana and New Orleans (through which most of the nation's grain exports go), but don't want to pay for it. Fine. Give Louisiana back to the French. Let Our People Go! Then we'll tax your grain and your oil as they flow across our state using our ports and wetlands, and build our own damned levees. Until then, you goddamn well do have a responsibility towards Louisiana. Fix those damned levees, already!

-- Badtux the Louisiana Penguin

Posted by: BadTux / 2/08/2006 08:45:00 AM  


That's as sick as it as revolting.

I think I should start sleeping in my closet...
# posted by Mimus Pauly : 9/2/06 1:08 AM  

I live partway between Baton Rouge and New Orleans. Nearly every night on our local news there are stories about how all these hotels are being utterly destroyed by the evacuees living in them. It IS time to get them out of the hotels.

You can't go two blocks around here without running to a help wanted sign. All these businesses that were in New Orleans have moved. There's in Baton Rouge or elsewhere and they're begging for people to come work. If you can drive a truck, you can haul FEMA trailers for $350/haul. The whole notion that these people don't have the ability to help themselves is unbelievable.

If you watch these interviews, you see many young, healthy capable people who spend their days listening to the ipods and playing the Xboxes they bought with all the money various government entities and charities threw at these people. They're living on our money, getting a free ride, because we're enabling them. It's time to cut them loose, and force them to take care of themselves.

I will acknowledge that there are elderly, infirm, sick, handicapped, etc. people that do need help. There are services that will provide for these people. They always have, they always will.

You want New Orleans to come back? It CAN'T. It won't until they clear out the hotels so the tourists come back. They're placing so much hope that Mardi Gras is going to lift them out of the financial crisis, but it's not. There's nowhere for the tourists to stay because all the hotels are full of evacuees.

So, you can judge the situation from a distance, but until you're here, living with it every day, you have no idea.
# posted by Autumn : 9/2/06 6:49 AM  

If they could drive a truck, they wouldn't be there in the first place. These are people who had no skills to begin with. moving them doesn't change that.

This whole thing was underthought from the beginning. Last September I came up with a plan, but nobody listened. This will get worse before it gets better.
# posted by Debra : 9/2/06 7:30 AM  

Autumn, the point is not that they belong in hotels. As you note, they don't. But you don't just throw people out on the street with no home to go to, when you're responsible for destroying their home in the first place. It's as if I went to your house, accidentally knocked it down with my bulldozer, said "Whoops!" and then walked away. These folks had their homes bulldozed by the Corps of Engineers, basically, and now the Feds are just saying "Whoops!" and walking away.

You simply don't throw people out onto the street at the same time that you're promising them a trailer for their land but never delivering it.

As for your stories of Katrina survivors trashing hotels, are these similar to the stories of Katrina survivors in the Baton Rouge shelter raping and killing people in Baton Rouge? Stories which the Baton Rouge PD said were total bunkum, but which everybody in the area was repeating as if it was the gospel truth? This couldn't have anything to do with the fact that you're white and the majority of the New Orleans survivors are black, could it?

Naw, couldn't be, racism is dead in Louisiana. My cousin who lives in a shitty trailer house rather than in the nice subsidized apartment complex in her small town in Louisiana would agree with you. She doesn't live in that shitty trailer house because it's better than the apartment complex (it's not, it has no A/C, the plumbing barely works, and there's holes in the floor, and the roof leaks, vs. the apartment complex, where I've been visiting other relatives and it's pretty nice). She lives there because "there's too many niggers over there (in the apartment complex)". I bet she agrees with you 100% that racism is dead in Louisiana, yessiree!

- Badtux the Disgusted Penguin
# posted by BadTux : 9/2/06 9:05 AM  

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