Help The Victims Of Hurricane Katrina

The devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina is beyond measure. The City of New Orleans has been flooded. Biloxi and Gulfport are devastated. Hundreds of thousands of people have lost their homes, their possessions, and are lucky to have escaped with their lives. The flow of refugees from this disaster is absolutly unprecendented in modern times. This is the single biggest natural disaster of our times.

I remember the Des Moines floods of 1993 – and that wasn’t anything compared to what New Orleans and the rest of the Gulf Coast are experiencing now. These people need our help.

I’m joining with other bloggers in supporting the efforts of Catholic Charities in bringing badly needed relief assistance to the region. Louisiana is heavily Catholic, and Catholic Charities tends to do a good job of bring help where it is needed. Of course, the United Jewish Charities, the Lutheran Disaster Response, Mercy Corps, and other groups, both faith-based and secular are working in concert to provide potable water, food, medicine, and other critically-needed supplies to the people displaced by this disaster.

Instapundit has a massive roundup of links to blogs with information and resources on helping the victims of Hurricane Katrina. One of the greatest things about this country is its generousity. Americans brought aid and comfort to a people a world away, and now it’s time to help out our own.

Anything you can give – money, time, supplies, whatever, makes a difference.

Updates From The Disaster Zone

Evacuations of the Superdome had to be halted because people were shooting at the military helicopters evacuating refugees. It’s clear that civil society in New Orleans has utterly failed as roving gangs of criminals are all over the city. The orders should be clear: anyone caught looting or threatening others should be shot on sight. The President needs to suspend habeas corpus if necessary – the situation in the are is dangerous for those innocents that haven’t been able to evacuate at this time.

The Economist looks at the potential aftereffects to the US economy. As in any disaster, natural or otherwise, the economic problems effect everyone, not just those who were unfortunate enough to be directly affected.

Global has some haunting satellite imagery of the devastation.

I never thought I’d say this, but is providing a great public service. I’m glad to see they’re putting their internet savvy to good use.

(Technorati tags: Flood aid, Hurricane Katrina)

5 thoughts on “Help The Victims Of Hurricane Katrina

  1. “Anyone caught looting….should be shot on site.”

    Is this reasonable? At least if you’re referring to the looting of goods in stores that will be destroyed anyway? Even if they’re stealing big-screen TV’s instead of food and water, what good will they be? And what degree of loss will be suffered by Winn-Dixie or Wal-Mart if people steal goods that are insured and will be destroyed anyway? It just seems like the police and National Guard have more important things to do that start shooting at looters stealing items destined to float around in underwater cesspools.

    Beyond that, it’s more than a little troubling that in a time of emergency, you would respond to the inevitable petty theft with such Gestapo tactics, thrusting death squads on the guy trying to get food and water for his children. It just goes to show how unfit you for a role of leadership.

  2. I should clarify – I don’t include someone taking perishables like diapers or food as a looter. Those people are doing what they have to do to survive. Anyone doing that isn’t a risk to public safety, and we’d all probably do the same in that situation. They’re not the problem.

    The people stealing big-screen TVs are the same roving gangsters that are shooting at the evacuating helicopters, raiding children’s hospitals, and shooting innocent people. They are making the situation much worse and under the conditions of martial law can and should be shot on sight. New Orleans is basically been given over to mob rule, and it is absolutely imperative that order be restored now.

  3. Heh, when I heard that initially only 100 national guard were deployed to the city, I laughed a bit- on a regular day, New Orleans could have used 100 national guard MPs to keep order… right now I don’t know if 1000 is enough.

    Au revoir, New Orleans, my love. The city that twisted me around in more strange ways than I care to remember, the town that stole my heart (twice), took my virginity, got me high, plunged me low, stole the final scraps of my sanity and kidnapped my dreams, is now nothing more than a memory; even if it is rebuilt, it will never be the same place again; just another soulless entertainment town, a Las Vegas on the bayou, capitalizing off of the image of what it once was.

    Goodbye, Big Easy; I lived more on your streets in two weeks than I did in two decades in South Dakota.

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  5. I’ve never been to the Big Easy so my memories can best be described as “second-hand.” I always got nervous when my ex-girlfriend, who then attended Arkansas State University, said she and some friends were heading down to Mardi Gras for the weekend. Chances are, my nervousness was justified. On the bright side, I doubt she was the all-time record holder for bead collection. She had many impressive attributes, but buxomness was not one of them.

    On a more serious note, I hoped I’d never live to see the day where misconduct by every level of government would rise to the egregiousness of what was seen during the highly preventable Grand Forks, North Dakota, floods back in 1997, when the first sandbag was laid the day before the inevitable floodwater besieged the Red River after a winter of record snowfall melted. What we’ve seen in New Orleans in the past week has been 10 times more embarrassing and disgusting than Grand Forks.

    For decades, local, state and federal government bodies have known that August 29, 2005 was coming to New Orleans. Yet with that in mind, a Boy Scout troop could have organized a better evacuation plan than what our government has done. If Hurricane Katrina had remained a Level 5 and not turned 50 miles east at the last minute, nearly everybody that stayed in town would have been dead by now as massive tidal waves would have gushed into town rather than the slow trickle of a levee rupture. The body count would have been at least ten times higher than 9-11.

    From a political standpoint, those blaming George Bush for the incompetent government response are missing the big picture. Granted, if New Orleans was a city that had given more than 21% of its vote to Bush in the last two election cycles, it probably wouldn’t have taken a week to send in 100 National Guardsmen. Nonetheless, Bush is but one player in this less-than-comedic comedy of errors that have miserably failed the city of New Orleans and the entire country. For a city this vulnerable to Mother Nature to not have a solid and decades-old evacuation and rescue plan is unimagineable negligence.

    And judging from the response I’ve been hearing from the black community, the Republican Party’s perceived inroads among African-American voters has likely been squandered.

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