No offense taken Koll!
I think people are mostly the same no matter what their ethnicity, nationality or culture. I don't think Iraqis are "animals" as Bush once said. I don't think that most of the looters in NO are greedy or evil (although there certainly are some
people who fall into this category). So when I see looting and riots and attacks on rescue workers (which truly are reprehensible) I ask myself: "What wolud cause me
to act this way. It is not
an acceptable for me to answer, "I would never do this." I know from experience that I can be pushed to the edge. And I think that is what we are seeing: people who are not (for whatever reason) fully in charge of their mental faculties and their actions.
That doesn't mean we should back off and let them control the city. It doesn't mean we shoud find excuses. But it does
mean that we shouldn't be surprised
. Any emergency rescue plan that doesn't take into account civil unrest during a national disaster, is just plain inadequate. If I am sitting here, nice and dry, well fed and hydrated, finding fault with people I would start with George Bush not the people of New Orleans. In 2000, FEMA produced a report in which they outlined the three likeliest, most catastrophic disaster
which our contry would face. The top three, in no particular order, were: An earthquake in San Francisco, a terrorist attack in New York City, and a hurricane in New Orleans. http://www.swingstateproject.com/2005/0 ... proves.php
The Bush administrations responce was to cut funding. It has been known for many, many years that a major hurricane in New Orleans would be catastrophic. The levee walls were built to wishstand only a category 3 hurricane. The coastal wetlands are being washed away. The details that we see in New Orleans now, lost power, massive flooding, hospitals turning away sick and injured, people stranded and dying within sight of rescue workers, widescale civil unrest and looting, these were all predicted by FEMA. But without money, plans cannot be put into effect. Over the past 4 years, newspapers have repeatedly cited funding for the "war" in Iraq as the major reason that levee pojects have been put on hold.
So as a category 5 hurricane was barreling down on New Orleans, where was Bush? On a 5-week vacation. Where was Cheney? On vacation. Where was the National Guard? In Iraq. The lesson we should have learned from Iraq is that it is far, far harder to restore order than it is to maintain it in the first place, but the response from the federal government was 48 hours too late. (Bush did
urge people too leave the area, that is true. But how do you do that when you are in a nursing home? Or a hospical? Or don't have a car? Or are living paycheck to paycheck and can't afford gas or a hotel? I know one person who stayed because when she evacuated for hurricane Dennis it cost her $1500 dollars. She couldn't afford to evacuate again.)
I still cannot just say, "It's the situation that judges the actions". If this is the case, we do not have free will to decide what we choose to do.
As for Bush and Cheny, we might as well say that they are going through the same thing as these people, just that instead of a natural hurrican they are in power. See what I mean?