Nur al-Cubicle

A blog on the current crises in the Middle East and news accounts unpublished by the US press. Daily timeline of events in Iraq as collected from stories and dispatches in the French and Italian media: Le Monde (Paris), Il Corriere della Sera (Milan), La Repubblica (Rome), L'Orient-Le Jour (Beirut) and occasionally from El Mundo (Madrid).

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Raw Racism in Louisiana

Matthew Brown of the New Orleans daily Times-Picayune recounts shocking incidents of racism during the recent human distress in the hurricane-ravaged city. Law enforcement departments in the communities listed below should be punished for this unexcusable disregard for the victims' plight--because of their skin color.

Bridge emphasizes divide between communities

When the Superdome and the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center deteriorated into anarchy and food and water ran short, many who tried to escape the flooded streets of New Orleans found their paths blocked.

Gretna police fired shots over the heads of evacuees streaming across the Crescent City Connection, as bullhorns blared for them to go back to New Orleans.

In Plaquemines Parish, dozens of sheriff's deputies raised shotguns and pistols to turn back a convoy of school buses attempting to take storm victims to safety at the Naval Air Station-Joint Reserve Base in Belle Chasse.

And in Westwego, arriving evacuees had two choices: Leave immediately, or go to an overcrowded shelter with few supplies where armed guards accompanied by a police dog prevented anyone from leaving.

The confrontations occurred largely along racial lines: African-American residents of poor sections of New Orleans facing off against majority white law enforcement agencies.

Elected law enforcement officials remain unapologetic over their response and say they would take the same steps if the city flooded again.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

vNice post. It makes you proud to be "'Merican," doesn't it?

Norman Mailer, senile though he now seems to be, said in 2000 that the divide between black and white was the biggest problem facing the U.S. and that it might ultilmately destroy the nation.

In the hysteria after 9/11 that almost seemed quaint. Yet it remains true.

Every time I get to know a wingnut long enough to drill down through his thinking -- by no fault of my own I get thrown into the company of wingnuts (I've developed the stomach for it now, but I used to puke.) -- I've found at the bottom fear of "them."

At it's very core, American conservativism is based on fear and hatred, nothing more. (Hey, a poem!)

6:13 AM  

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