Although I hate to admit this, I will. I am not as sad or depressed as I was about New Orleans a few months ago. The distance between the event and where I live has created a boundary. Yes, I am still obsessed about my hometown. And yes, I want to see things improve yesterday.
I do my best to talk about it with all the classes I teach, and I try to educate them about how things are doing. It's not easy because people have the misconception (deliberate or not) that the majority of New Orleans is below sea level. I try to correct them - once the levees failed, the bowl that is protected by theses same levees held the water in. This is what caused the flooding. (Many people do not know that it was levee failure that caused the majority of the damage. They seem to believe that a huge wave washed over the city or something like that.)
It is always a shock when I tell them that my mother's neighbors were just able to settle with their insurance company in May of 2007. They have been living upstairs waiting for things to improve - he was one of the managers at City Park and she worked for Tulane's School of Engineering. I cannot imagine having my world turned this upside down - everything they knew and worked for was gone or going away.
With that in mind, I found this article about depression, New Orleans, and Katrina and it struck a chord. This is the line that makes me think the most - "These people don't necessarily need a good psychiatrist," Rigamer said. "They need a good contractor or someone to fix the 'Road Home' program and good leadership."
Mr. Nagin, Mrs. Blanco, Mr. Bush, et al. -
Your incompetency, miscalculation, and greed is killing people or should I say causing people to kill themselves. These are innocent people who simply want to rebuild their lives, homes, families, and neighborhoods. It has been two years, and depression rates have increased. They did not level off or go down. And you are to blame. If one person committed suicide because of your policy/inaction/inability, I hope someone else finds a legal way to sue you for negligent homicide or some other crime. And I hope that once you find your way to hell (where you surely are going) that you rot there.
That is all.
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