Friday, September 09, 2005

Today's Katrina Thoughts

I've had the priviledge over the last week to volunteer at Second Mile Ministry, getting to spend time visiting individually with Katrina victims coming through for help with food, clothing, and gas. I've written a little about what I've seen and learned in the Making Career Changes blog. There's so much more I'd like to write about that, but it'll have to wait until I have more time.

Also, we've been paying close attention to happenings in Gulfport, since the Coast Guard activated son John. His reserve unit is based there, and the base itself was destroyed by Katrina. Since most of his fellow reservists are from Mississippi and New Orleans, one objective is to be able to get in touch with all of them and meet their needs. I'm anxious to hear from him how they are doing.

As a final note for today, I've noticed that many of us are suffering the symptoms of grief and stress as an aftermath of Katrina, even if we weren't directly affected by storm loss. Some are physical effects, and many are emotional effects. Reach out to someone today and really listen to them. And find someone who will listen to you. And some hugs would be a good thing as well.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Poverty Caused the Katrina Disaster

Here's another article from the Houston Chronicle giving facts about the folks hardest hit by Katrina. Consider this fact from the article:
One of the worst-hit neighborhoods in the heart of New Orleans, for example, had a median household income of less than $7,500. Nearly three of every four residents fell below the poverty line, and barely 1 in 3 people had a car.
Poverty is the disaster. Katrina was just an event that brought it to attention.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Race, Poverty, and Katrina

None of us can watch what has happened this last week and not see that while everyone has suffered loss, it's those who were living in poverty that have not only suffered loss, but worse.

For perspective, read Rick Casey's article in today's Houston Chronicle. Also read posts from the last week from Larry James' blog.

Not only were there no plans to evacuate those living in poverty before the storm, and not only were we slow to be able to evacuate them after the storm, but do you suppose there are any plans to help them regain a life after the storm? Since they didn't own homes or businesses, they won't be getting any loans or assistance in rebuilding. And since the places where they lived and worked don't exist any more, they don't have anything to return to. What will happen to them after they close the Astrodome and other shelters?