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Passions in Poetry

A Necessary Rant

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catalinamoon
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The Shores of Alone


0 posted 09-05-2005 05:54 PM       View Profile for catalinamoon   Email catalinamoon   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit catalinamoon's Home Page   View IP for catalinamoon


Hi all, you know how lucky we are to be able to read this. I just heard a news report that made me cry, and I can't stop thinking about it. I'm sure anyone watching news may have seen it as well, as horrible as all the other things I have seen this week, this just did it for me. A man who was a Jefferson Parish official speaking of his coworker who was in contact with his elderly mother in a nursing home. Now here is the failure of our government and I don't care what anyone says, this is unforgivable. This was all week, he was trying to get help for her, and telling her the  government would come, they would be there soon, and FRIDAY NIGHT this lady drowned-in her nursing home. NO excuse..none. I can't stand it. Someone needs to be held responsible for this. Its not ok. That was not a natural disaster that killed that woman, it was not a failure on her part to evacuate(obviously she could not), it was not that no one knew where she was,it was not that it was the immediate day after and things were impossible. It was FRIDAY NIGHT. Where was the blackhawk helicopter that could have saved her??
I guess now I understand better the survivalist mentality that so many in this country have..being the liberal democrat that I am, I never thought like that, but now I see we can not count on anyone helping us until it's too late. Great feeling, to know that about your government. I have been alternately sad, mad, and grateful to be in New Hampshire all week, but right now I feel hysterical, after hearing that man on tv, he was sobbing, and saying it over and over, every day, someone will come, someone will come. And then she drowned. Oh my God. Its just too much for me.
I wish I was more religious right now, I would say God bless everyone that is ok and cares. Instead, just thanks for listening.
Sandra
Mistletoe Angel
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1 posted 09-05-2005 06:31 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel

Hi Sandra! (angel hugs) I just got back from the Oregon Coast with my family and grandparents, I spent the Labor Day weekend with them in a beach house in Lincoln City, and yes, we did indeed watched a lot of cable television in the evening, where Katrina was something we kept talking about after heading to the beach and marinas in the daytime.

The more I've watched and the more I've learned about the response, the more I'm just so disappointed of their weak response to the tragedy. Seeing Aaron Broussard's most pure, emotional response on Meet The Press made me cry indeed, as I believe we all truly want to have the utmost faith that our government will rush to help us when we're in dire straits, and when there's such a delay on their part, how else could you possibly feel? Surely you can't help but feel abandoned, or betrayed somewhat.

I'm just not convinced that many in the government were aware that this wasn't your typical emergency response, and make no mistake that there have been many other bad hurricanes lately that caused hurt and harm. But the meteorlogists, who originally said Katrina was probably going to head along the western coast of Florida, were able to warn that it made an unpredictable shift deeper in the Gulf of Mexico and the eventual right turn toward Louisiana/Mississippi, and that the New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin warned the city ahead of time this was a disaster that had to be taken seriously and ordered evacuation measures and such, and after all of that, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the administration didn't even seem to hear the warning until two to two and a half days had passed after Katrina hit the coast.

Like I was saying in the initial Katrina thread, this hurricane couldn't have been prevented, and much of its damage was inevitable. I can also understand how indeed it takes time and effort to move National Guard troops from one place to another and they couldn't have made it right away.

But the actions of the administration and FEMA are just inexcusable to me. Indeed if they had signaled and responded earlier, the National Guard soldiers would have been there about two days earlier and spared a lot of the heartache, deaths and dislocation that has happened all throughout the region. On their watch, about the ten or more who died each hour could have had a second chance had they responded sooner and emergency health services were offered to them.

I do think FEMA's merger with the Department of Homeland Security after 9/11 did indeed explain how short-sighted our government seems to be on non-terrorism related issues and responses. I like what I hear about that legislation the Democrat John D. Dingell will introduce tomorrow that will break that merger and make FEMA an independent agency headed by a cabinet-level executive that will monitor these sorts of domestic threats.

I also hope our government will truly learn from this mess. In 2001, FEMA itself warned that a hurricane hitting New Orleans would be the deadliest of three theorized disasters facing New York (a San Francisco earthquake and New York City terror attack were the other two), yet federal spending on flood control in southeast Louisiana has been slashed by almost half since 2001. Work on New Orleans' east levee stalled last summer for the first time in decades. And earlier this year, when the US Army Corps of Engineers wanted $27 million to maintain the levees along Lake Pontchartrain, the government only agreed to under $6 million.

I hope our government truly learns from this lesson and maybe they'll begin spending less on fighting an acceleratingly unstable and wronged war in Iraq and more on the defense of our own borders. After all, how can I begin to believe the government is protecting us or can defend us from a feared next major attack here if they were so slow this time around?

I truly hope they learn from their mistakes here and show the will to swiftly respond and rush to the aid and defense of the citizens rather than playing guitar with Mark Willis or shopping for shoes on Fifth Avenue.

*****

Despite their rough tardiness, I applaud the wonderful, caring and compassionate spirit of Americans in each state, each county, each community nationwide. The compassion of everyday American families and volunteers I truly feel is a well in their hearts that never runs dry and continues to grace our great country with the gift of hope and healing.

God Bless all you Passions poets who have given your whole hearts, and God Bless America!



Love,
Noah Eaton

"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other"

Mother Teresa

catalinamoon
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2 posted 09-05-2005 07:04 PM       View Profile for catalinamoon   Email catalinamoon   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit catalinamoon's Home Page   View IP for catalinamoon

Just to add, I have seen some wonderful stories about neighbors helping eachother, that could almost give you some hope..Lots of good people out there, I'm not negating them with this rant.
Mistletoe Angel
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3 posted 09-05-2005 08:13 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel



(big angel hugs) Oh Sandra, you are soooooo right, and I certainly wasn't negating any of them either. In fact, I am praising these millions of Americans who have given soooooo much with all my hearts, as they bring out the best of America's promise and the full spirit of giving and sharing.

The efforts these millions of Americans have made, from donating money, to offering food and blankets and baby formula, to giving plasma to spare the healthy citizens of New Orleans, Biloxi, etc. from having to give all their blood for the sick children and other victims, represent the purest spirit of America. I've long believed America has ever so often been the first nation to respond to tragedies worldwide that have afflicted many of the worlds innocent, and we all have inspired so many the entire world over.

My family and I gave $500 together before heading on our Labor Day retreat, and really want to contribute even more. I am also stepping into a Red Cross clinic this week to give blood (mine is O positive! ) and want to start up a local Portland relief effort, where I'm planning to connect with Sisters of the Road Cafe and the Oregon Food Bank to offer local services to the families and survivors in Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas, etc, as well as continuing to promote Katrina relief efforts on KBOO.

Whenever you have the time, do anything you can to help! Every little bit helps!

Love,
Noah Eaton

"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other"

Mother Teresa

Huan Yi
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4 posted 09-05-2005 10:55 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi


Where was the staff at the nursing home?
catalinamoon
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5 posted 09-06-2005 09:51 AM       View Profile for catalinamoon   Email catalinamoon   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit catalinamoon's Home Page   View IP for catalinamoon

Hung Yi, Thats something I would like answered. NO idea. Ran off maybe, and left the patients? I truly hope not.
LeeJ
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6 posted 09-06-2005 12:22 PM       View Profile for LeeJ   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for LeeJ

I heard the same story on the news...and your absolutely right, there are and were a lot of local people down there who lost everything, yet, still performed a search and rescue.

Good rant, good thread
Midnitesun
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7 posted 09-06-2005 01:03 PM       View Profile for Midnitesun   Email Midnitesun   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Midnitesun

A very sad story indeed, and we all ask the same Q's ? were the staff members injured, did they also drown? There ISNO excuse for this, as there were boats and busses available and they had advanced warnings of level 4. How come those people didn't get evacuated before the levees broke? Having worked with disabled, infirm and elderly, I know the usual drill would have been to evacuate, just in case, to a safer location.
I can't imagine why they were still in that nursing home, considering the obvious danger level.


Not A Poet
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8 posted 09-06-2005 02:14 PM       View Profile for Not A Poet   Email Not A Poet   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Not A Poet's Home Page   View IP for Not A Poet

Mainly because Mayor Nagin left the 350 busses parked instead of using them to evacuate those unable to evacuate themselves.
catalinamoon
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9 posted 09-06-2005 02:49 PM       View Profile for catalinamoon   Email catalinamoon   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit catalinamoon's Home Page   View IP for catalinamoon

But WHY?
Not A Poet
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10 posted 09-06-2005 06:13 PM       View Profile for Not A Poet   Email Not A Poet   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Not A Poet's Home Page   View IP for Not A Poet

No one seems to know. I understand the FEMA folks urged him to issue an evacuation order on Saturday and the President insisted he do so on Sunday. Finally he did Monday, when it was too late. Then just left those without transportation to fend for themselves. I also heard there were 2 people who actually stole scool busses and took busload to Houston.

Why didn't the mayor do something senseable. The only logical answer is absolute incompetence or indifference.
Larry C
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11 posted 09-06-2005 06:49 PM       View Profile for Larry C   Email Larry C   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Larry C's Home Page   View IP for Larry C

Hindsight. Bet a lot of people would like overs. How tragic when there seemed to be so much advance notice. So many hurricanes make everyone respond as if we are just crying wolf. Until it's over then... Just so tragic.

If tears could build a stairway and memories a lane, I'd walk right up to heaven and bring you home again.

Greeneyes
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12 posted 09-07-2005 09:18 AM       View Profile for Greeneyes   Email Greeneyes   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Greeneyes

Mainly because Mayor Nagin left the 350 busses parked instead of using them to evacuate those unable to evacuate themselves'''''


~~~~
according to him it was not his fault....
~~~~

Hi Sandra....sad indeed....and even sadder, the answers we all seek may never happen....

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