Friday, September 02, 2005

At a loss

I apologize for not posting that much. To say the least I have been slightly overwhelmed with classes, unpacking, and wathching a city I love fall to pieces and worrying not only about my friends but about an entire city that really shaped so much of who I am.

All of my friends are safe, the same sadly cannot be said for their pets who were left and most likely their houses. Yojna who works for the Army Corp of Engineers may be able to go back soon to assist in whatever way she can. Her boyfriend, Fredo, works at a hospital there and he is going back on Sat. I will hopefully be able to get updates from him on the situation. I know that Yojna wants to get back quickly but is very concerned about Fredo returning since they have been warned that they cannot go anywhere alone and should have a police officer with them if at all possible. The city has truly fallen into chaos on so many levels.

This is a situation that everyone talked about but no one thought would ever really occur. I don't think the time to point fingers is here yet but I will just say that many factors on the city , state, and federal level contributed to the severity of the situation. When everyone is safe, many questions will have to be answered including, why funding for flood relief efforts have been drastically cut for the past years, why the federal response continues to be slow even when you have people dying in the streets, and can we afford to have the majority of our National Guard fighing in Iraq ( I think the answer clearly is no).

On a personal note, I feel like my heart is breaking for New Orleans. New Orleans is a city of extremes and has been so since its founding. It has overwhelming religious influence from multiple countries beside extreme debauchery. Music that ranges from zydeco, jazz, brass bands, mardi gras Indians, and even some opera. The people are so diverse, at one time there were more Irish immigrants in New Orleans then in NYC or Boston not to mention German, Italian, French, and African influcences are still strong. It is the reason that a New Orleans accent sort of sounds like a really slow Brooklyn accent, not southern.

It is a city unlike any place in America and has a population that has always maintained its culture in such a beautiful way despite the extreme poverty that comsumes the majority of the people. Poverty in New Orleans is overwhelming and crippling like all poverty, but it is unique in that is illustrates so clearly the level of class that we have in America.

Roughly 25,000 evacuees will be in San Antonio soon, I plan on taking any extra time I have to help out in any way I can.

Sorry for this being all over the place, I will post again when I have my thoughts in order more.

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