Forget what you may have heard. We are not Ok.
We are stuck in a hell of human folly with the lives and futures of millions in the delicate balance. A dissipating coast, a weak criminal justice system, devious politicians and a decrepit flood protection system form a mass of mental anguish that gnaws at the chaste souls who inhabit the area. And none of this is Katrina’s fault. In case you haven’t heard, it never was.
It is and has always been the fault of men.
The flooding of New Orleans in August 2005 was caused by doomed levees, built and watched over by flawed characters. It was a horrible engineering failure and it was due to the incompetence of the Army Corps of Engineers and the local governments whose task it was to watch over them.
The vanishing coast is devoured and chewed up by canals and natural gas lines of oil and gas companies coming in from the gulf.
The recovery is being overseen by a swarm of political weakness and its empty promises. An inept president, a feckless governor and an oblivious mayor lack the conviction needed in this critical time. They are pitiful. Not fit to be elected as public servants. They have failed us. We intend to drive them out, but we need to know that America won’t fail us the way our elected officials and their petulant bureaucracies have. America, we need you to stand with us, not against us.
We need you to understand that our recovery is not a political issue. Men have turned it into that. It should never have been something that indicates a party or a way of thought. When people need help, partisan motivations shouldn’t prevent them from receiving it. Yet that is what America’s politicians have done to the recovery of South Louisiana.
We are, after all, Americans. Though we are people that much comedy has been written about – Southern Americans, black Americans, poor Americans – understand that we are Americans nonetheless. This is something that so-called patriots tend to forget. Portions of our paychecks go to America. We’d like a little of it back, not for some majestic bridge or a grandiose vanity project, but for the safety and protection of our unique way of life. Our unique American way of life. We won’t abandon you America, please don’t abandon us. We need the citizenship of the United States to stand with us.
It is our pleasure America, to provide you three strategic ports to export 55 to 70 percent of all U.S. corn, soy, and wheat. Please utilize the large percentages of rubber, coffee and oil and gas that pass through the area every year on 50,000 barges and 6000 freighters.
Please continue to enjoy the jazz and blues music our culture created. Also be aware that this music was then refined to become rock ‘n’ roll and that music has in turn typified what it means to be an American over the last 60 years.
As you enjoy these resources, understand that the river on which our city sits was for many years a meandering body of water that often replaced its own delta and swayed wildly around the area over the course of thousands of years, creating rich agricultural farmland as it did. In 1963, the Army Corp of Engineers built a control structure that permanently fixed the path of the Mississippi River on its current descent to the Gulf of Mexico. By doing so, they guaranteed New Orleans would be the last city on the river’s trek to the ocean. The Corps did this on behalf of the United States government and its constituents. Any suggestion as to abandoning the city of New Orleans (as has been ignorantly and callously suggested) must also include the question of what city will then facilitate the mouth of the river in the wake of New Orleans downfall and America’s ongoing need to stay the course of the Mississippi River.
Some choose to cite the challenge of ensuring the safety of South Louisiana as the very reason for not doing so. These uninspired need only look abroad to be shown the way. The system can be built like the reclamation and flood control projects in countries like Britain, Italy, Dubai, China and, perhaps most spectacularly, The Netherlands. Where do we, as Americans stand next to these magnificent achievements?
America, we are only asking for a future and we only demand it because it sometimes seems like we have been forsaken. Not by God or nature, which can’t be lobbied or petitioned with, but by Americans themselves, who may be reticent to help due to the wool pulled over their eyes by politicians aiming to play politics with our lives.
What Americans should realize is that if South Louisiana is left to perish because it is too expensive or difficult to save, what or where will the next natural disaster on the list be? This isn’t something that is exclusive to our parts.
It was a monster storm, a storm of the century. The damage she inflicted along the Gulf Coast was shocking. But, as powerful as it was, please understand one thing America…
It isn’t a hurricane that thwarts our revival, it’s men.