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An exposť of American society *LINK*

The post-Katrina events in New Orleans are only an expose of the hollowness of American society, showing sharp racial and ethnic divides in a country that champions egalitarianism, human dignity and freedoms. What happened in the southern states hit by the deadly hurricane and the subsequent flooding, however, provide ample evidence to massive poverty, powerlessness and inequities that marginalise the ethnic minorities.

Most of the victims of the natural disaster are black. Most of those killed were the poor who lacked means of mobility to have fled the city before Katrina pounded the US Gulf Coast earlier this week. The residents are desperate for food, clean water and basic medical care. Hospitals are lacking drugs and power and are unable to save critically ill patients. Helpless survivors wait for days on end for help to arrive after having lost their family members and belongings in raging floodwaters.

As the saga of the Afro-Americans unfolded on the international media, the charade of utopian society cracked bit by bit, baring open the frail soul of the nation. The Americans this time lost the game of imagery and deception.

The images of hopelessness and despair were unbelievable for a country that is a dream for billions around the world. Now that Hurricane Katrina has washed away the neat coating of fine words that has kept the dark social realities hidden, the world can see the deep economic division in the American society where resources are not as equitably distributed as claimed.

The way the gangs of looters unleashed on vacated property in the devastated city was perhaps an outcome of the skewed income distribution and growing rich-poor gap. The deprivation breeds crime and this is exactly what happened in New Orleans. The looting and plundering in the city, where dead bodies floated in floodwaters also showed the public insensitiveness to the misery on display.

The sense of American cohesion and nationhood was nowhere to be seen.

Delayed relief, heavy enforcement of security forces to enforce order and breakdown of the state have rightly prompted the Louisiana officials to call the chaotic aftermath of Hurricane Katrina a national disgrace.

The Bush administration now has to manage the crisis at two levels. It has to immediately help the poor in the southern states to be able to restart their lives from scratch.

This may happen quickly now that Congress has sanctioned a generous grant. But what will take a long time is to restore the image of the nation that Hurricane Katrina has damaged. The American nation will never be the same.

http://www.jang.com.pk/thenews/sep2005-daily/04-09-2005/oped/editorial.htm#2

Messages In This Thread

Hurricane Katrina Exposes Racism And Inequality
Amid stench of death, poor bear the brunt
The Great Mississippi Flood in 1927
Re: Hurricane Katrina Exposes Racism And Inequalit
Blind to History
The Storm After the Storm
Mayor Ray Nagin Radio Interview. *LINK*
Bush Strafes New Orleans, Where's Huey Long? *LINK*
They're Trying to Wash Us Away.... *LINK*
The dispossessed of New Orleans tell... *LINK*
Oops! We forgot the niggers (again)! *LINK*
Re: Oops! We forgot the niggers (again)! *LINK*
An exposť of American society *LINK*
Mother's remark puts silver foot in Bush's mouth *LINK*
White House: Mrs. Bush Comment 'Personal' *LINK*
Warnings were loud and clear
The Great New Orleans Land Grab
Eight Big Lies About Katrina *LINK*
Exiles from a city and from a nation *LINK*
'Racist' police blocked bridge and forced evacuees back
New Orleans Unmasks 'Apartheid, American Style'
Re: New Orleans Unmasks 'Apartheid, American Style
Re: New Orleans Unmasks 'Apartheid, American Style
Re: New Orleans Unmasks 'Apartheid, American Style *NM*
Re: New Orleans Unmasks 'Apartheid, American Style
Re: New Orleans Unmasks 'Apartheid, American Style
We had to kill our patients
Bush's Status With Blacks Takes Hit
T&T gives US$2m in aid for Katrina victims
The petulant president *LINK*
The Shame of Blaming the Victims
Bush becomes Katrina mourner-in-chief *LINK*
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