The Picnic Trash
I said there and I'll say again, that I had not seen the video when I wrote that. I had only read the transcript, and hey, read it yourself and you might see how I could get the idea that our President was directing the comment to Mr. Ruffins.
Okay, I get it. He wasn't.
That having been said, one commenter called New Orleans residents, probably me in particular, whiners. I have to reject that.
In my opinion, the insensitivity of both the theme and the comment is still troublesome. Someone up there thought a Mardi Gras themed party for Congress, held in mid-June, was a good idea. I find that bizarre and yes, culturally insensitive--but then Americans have always been a bit dense in the area of cultural sensitivity. Just ask the Native Americans, the Vietnamese or the Iraqis.
It was also insensitive to be celebrating an aspect of a city that Bush clearly wishes to forget. He wants to forget his horrendous response to the storm named Katrina, and although he promised that the US Government would stay as long as it took, etc. (his speech is burned into New Orleanians' memories word for word and still lit by arc lights), he has let the Corps of Engineers continue to hold us hostage to their levee and floodgate serendipity. ("We'll build temporary floodgates, no we won't, we'll build permanent ones. They'll be done by 2012.")
Meanwhile, here in the City, the Corps posted maps showing the possibility of flooding pre-Katrina in any given area in the city, and now the possibility post-Katrina. Many people are re-building homes in the areas that are still prone to flooding, and taking their anti-depressants and anti-anxiety pills hoping not to lose what they are just getting back. And at that, there are still entire areas of this city that look like a bomb hit them.
I say to Mr. Bush, come on down and really do something. Then I'll say thanks for coming, we'll take you to K-Paul's for dinner, Mr. Ruffins is playing at the Blue Nile Friday night, we'll give you some beads, and we hope you'll pick up the trash left by the Corps' incompetent levee design on your way out.
Katrina NOLA New Orleans Hurricane Katrina Louisiana FEMA levee flooding Corps of Engineers We Are Not OK New Orleans Slate Katrina Refrigerator Rising Tide George Bush Kermit Ruffins Congressional Picnic