Now, you might know that New Orleans holds a special place in my heart. My husband and I spent 10 days there, leaving about a week before Katrina hit. When we were getting ready to return home, we heard about a big storm churning in the Gulf. Now, when we were there we spent a lot of time at the Convention Center. I can not even begin to tell you how I felt when I saw the footage of people starving there, dying there, elderly people lined up along the wall seaming like they were just in line waiting to die. The stories of the rapes, the missing children. The footage of the Convention Center effected me the most. I had occupied that same space. I had sat in the same place where I was then watching on TV people dying from lack of food, water and medical care. My heart broke for the city I had just fell head over heals in love with. When was someone going to help them? How could it take so long? The heat, dehydration...what a senseless way to loose life in our great nation. You would think New Orleans was a third world county.
Here we are 7 years later and in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. We don't have the heat of New Orleans, but the cold is coming and another potential storm next week. I am blessed, we lost power for 3 days, no real damage to speak of. Not like our neighbors to the south in New York and New Jersey.
That leads me to our history lesson of the day...
On Monday 8/29/05 Katrina hits land. On Monday 10/29/12 Sandy hits land.
On Wednesday 8/31/05 Bush flies over New Orleans to survey damage(I am not defending this, just stating the facts). On Wednesday 10/31/12 Obama visits areas hit by Sandy.
On Thursday 9/1/05 Mayor Nagin pleads for help, his 'desperate SOS'. On Thursday 11/1/12 residents of Staten Island make desperate pleas for help, for food and for water.
On Friday 9/2/05 the National Guard convoy of food and aid reaches New Orleans. On Friday 11/2/12 the National Guard reaches Staten Island with food and water for the first time since the storm. All the while, Bloomberg continues to plan for the New York Marathon to step off from Staten Island on Sunday 11/4/12. Though the Mayor feels it would be good to give people something to cheer for, he does an about face and cancels the race.
By Saturday 9/3/05 both the Convention Center and the Superdome have been fully evacuated.
Now, all I know was the feeling I had in the days following Katrina. What was taking so long to get help to these people? Now granted, Bush did not handle the press or himself well during that time, but reviewing the time line, it is strikingly similar, and yet Obama is a hero? New York and New Jersey are nowhere out of the woods when you look at the immediate needs of people. New Orleans did have the heat, but NY and NJ have the cold. How many elderly people do you think are in apartments right now in NYC. No heat in dropping temperatures, no power, no running water, running out of food. What about all of the pets left behind? Dying of thirst and hunger shut up in apartments that there owners thought they would be back to in a day or two? All the while, it is suggested that a marathon should be run. Should the runners have waved as they jogged on by to the starving dying people who live in one of the greatest cities in the civilized world? How nice it would be to have 30,000 runners converge on Staten Island, stepping on the damaged remnants of the belongings of the people who lost everything? All of the resources directed away from recovery and saving people to focus on this frivolous activity in a city that can not afford frivolity at this time.
I am also going to point out another pattern, one that I call the Vegas pattern. Now I am not even going to get into Libya except to say that Obama took off to campaign in Vegas shortly after our 4 American citizens were murdered in Libya, one being our ambassador. Now, cut to this week and where does Obama jet off to again following his brief photo op? Yes, Vegas baby. Then, to add insult to injury, Obama is on the stump telling his supporters that they should take 'revenge' and that voting is the best revenge. The only thing I can say to that is, NY and NJ should take some of their own revenge out when they vote for being left high and dry in one of the worst disasters in our history by the current city, state and federal administrations. However, the sad fact of the matter is that so many won't have power back by then, they will be lucky to have gas to get anywhere and it seems almost impossible that polling places will be able to open in the hardest hit areas. Let's face it, their main priority is survival, not voting.
All I am left to say is...
Shame, shame shame on Obama and Bloomberg and I hope there is a similar song about them because just as Bush deserved this song, they deserve a song just like this of their very own...
Now, in the immortal words of Forest Gump, that's all I have to say about that.