August 31, 2005

"We have an American refugee situation on our hands."

Said a Red Cross spokeswoman about the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina:
"We have a mass migration of people who are homeless. It is an incredible thing to see and experience, and I don't think any of us in our lifetimes ever thought we would see anything like this."

15 comments:

Elizabeth said...

I would guess, conservatively, that 600,000 to 800,000 people evacuated just the New Orleans metro area. Add to that the areas of Mississippi and Alabama that have evacuated, and there could be about a million people out on the roads, in hotels, with friends. Most of us are jobless, possibly for months. Yep, this is something big.

Goesh said...

- sort of like the many transients and uprooted people of the Great Depression era - camps were set up, people were becoming squatters, young men by the thousands were riding the rails. Then there was the disruption of the Civil War and talk about displaced people, what about them Indians that got moved off their land by force of arms, eh? We have collectively dealt with worse situations but our ancestors did not regard our Government as having much of an obligation to them. Said expectations of today and what the tax payers want to fork over may differ significantly. I'm already hearing a bit of rumbling and mumbling about tax money being used to rebuild a city below sea level that will just flood again in a decade or less. Gas prices just radically jumped, which will make some people much less sympathetic towards forking over money to anyone for any reason. It's a hell of a life, ain't it?

Goesh said...

- sort of like the many transients and uprooted people of the Great Depression era - camps were set up, people were becoming squatters, young men by the thousands were riding the rails. Then there was the disruption of the Civil War and talk about displaced people, what about them Indians that got moved off their land by force of arms, eh? We have collectively dealt with worse situations but our ancestors did not regard our Government as having much of an obligation to them. Said expectations of today and what the tax payers want to fork over may differ significantly. I'm already hearing a bit of rumbling and mumbling about tax money being used to rebuild a city below sea level that will just flood again in a decade or less. Gas prices just radically jumped, which will make some people much less sympathetic towards forking over money to anyone for any reason. It's a hell of a life, ain't it?

Dave Schuler said...

As elizabeth above said, it's not short-term. As I just posted over chez nous the governors of both Louisiana and Mississippi are saying that the first of the year is probably realistic for a return to the affected areas. And return to what?

jeff said...

Geosh,

Perhaps they didn't expect the gov't to fork over to them... because back then they didn't fork over nearly as much to the gov't?

Welcome to Socialism.

Kathy Herrmann said...

I haven't heard much of anything reported regarding literal or moral support from other countries. Am I missing out on a chunk of the news?

Ann Althouse said...

Roaring Tiger: I'm looking for this too.

Kathy Herrmann said...

I'm finding it hard to comprehend New Orleans as a ghost town. The city is getting flack for its late evacuation of the poor, and perhaps it's justified. However, I'm amazed how how smoothly the first round of evaculations went. Geez, that an increbible number of people.

Kathy Herrmann said...

All Things Jennifer has a list of Katrina relief agencies.

Go here...
http://allthingsjennifer.blogspot.com/2005/08/hurricane-response-efforts.html

Elizabeth said...

Well, we're loading up the car, Beverly Hillbilly style, and heading for the spare bedroom of our friends' home in a tiny, North Texas town. We're so lucky to have the generosity of friends, and as of now, we could find ourselves moving around from Texas, to California, the Berskshires and Maine. We're staying close to NOLA in case we can get in and get stuff from our house in a brief time of access.

DaveG said...

Mixed reactions:

VIENNA, Austria (AP) - From papal prayers to telegrams from China, the world reacted with an outpouring of compassion Wednesday for the victims of Hurricane Katrina in messages tinged by shock that a disaster of this scale could occur in the United States.

Islamic extremists rejoiced in America's misfortune, giving the storm a military rank and declaring in Internet chatter that "Private" Katrina had joined the global jihad, or holy war. With "God's help," they declared, oil prices would hit $100 a barrel this year.

Brendan said...

I haven't heard much of anything reported regarding literal or moral support from other countries. Am I missing out on a chunk of the news?

Help and sympathy from overseas? Maybe not. Here's some quotes I culled from an Australian newsgroup. Representative? Probably not. But revealing:

Let us pray for a large body count of dead Americans

I wished that it'd hit texas instead of Louisiana (Texans are vile) and oh boy, what a sanctimonious screech went up amongst the yanks. Mind you, this is the country that took 2 days to latch onto the Tsunami story (I first knew about it from the Sydney Morning Herald website).

See all those cars streaming out of town, leaving all these people who
couldn't get out, bastards. Why couldn't they give the carless spots in their cars?

Why would we help a nation that has almost destroyed the world?

The septics are rich enough to look after their own troubles

And I can tell you, there'll be quite a few "floaters" out to see once New Orleans is given a good rinse...

The world takes from the Americans? That's a hoot. The Americans
impose themselves on others e.g. Iraq and Afghanistan, and with
clandestine operations in Sudan, Columbia and Iran and god knows where else. Some countries want nothing to do with the yanks e.g. Germany and France because they don't like the price they will have to pay to be in bed with them.
And how does Australia *take* from the Americans, and never give
anything back? We're giving the yanks our soldiers in Iraq and the
yanks couldn't give a shit.

As stated on another ng, if they can afford to spend $300b on a war halfway around the world, surely they can afford $15b to clean up from a hurricane.

vbspurs said...

Ann, I'd just like to inform you and my fellow Althousers (Althousians?) that my blog will be part of the Katrina Victims Blogger show of solidarity starting at 9 AM EDT Thursday.

We in South Florida were severely inconvenienced by this killer storm, and though I recounted on my blog that I had a rough 4 days without power, hot food, showers, no outside contact with the world, and the like, all this is mere childs' play compared to what the Gulf States are going through.

However, my parents survived Hurricane Andrew in 1992, and indeed, I will be adding my recollections of the post-Andrew aftermath during the Blogathon.

Who knows.

It might just make people understand what they're up against on the road to recovery.

As for the dirtbag Aussie who wrote this above, don't worry.

People around the world are truly shocked and emotionally involved with the "American tsunami" story.

Maybe as a Brit I understand this feeling more than Americans, but New Orleans plays a big role in the psyche of the world, as the birthplace of jazz and the wonderful Mardi Gras traditions.

Yes, it's true lots of people will rejoice, but even if you don't hear their comments, the VAST MAJORITY OF HUMAN BEINGS in this world are not rejoicing that Americans are suffering.

Don't buy into that all that anti-Americanism.

Resentment doesn't mean hatred, because people are at heart, decent.

Cheers,
Victoria

Brendan said...

As for the dirtbag Aussie who wrote this above, don't worry.

It wasn't one Aussie but rather several diff newsgroup posters. Sorry for the confusion. Here's another example of their compassion:

Yeah, we wouldn't want any fat southern Americans missing a meal or two and perhaps losing 10 kilos, would we? Donate all your KFC and McDonalds to them. Or maybe don't and instead of sending them billions, make them lose a couple of kilos so the American medicare system can save a couple of
billion.

vbspurs said...

Enough!

Why torture yourself with this kind of mind-set?

These people who wrote this are low-life scum.

They are just the type of "peacenik" who talks of peace and love and charity all the time, and yet haven't the slightest shred of compassion for all people, since compassion doesn't play nationality favourites.

They're the kind of peaceniks who talk a good game of world peace, but (I've noticed) often have the worst personal relationships in their private lives, or are so belligerent in their attitudes, that "peace" becomes an ironic moniker for what they do in real life.

I repeat -- the vast majority of people around the world would blanch if they were to read what you quoted.

Decent, kind, humane people who care for the victims of Katrina, not because they're Americans, but because they're PEOPLE.

Geez, and I thought I was a masochist for listening to NPR.

Cheers,
Victoria