Sunday, September 04, 2005

What we have here is a failure to communicate...

...And on so many levels of government! The federal government failed to respond fast enough and I will make no excuse for Bush, Chertoff or FEMA, but local government is not without fault either. People should have been given evacuation notice sooner, but aside from that, people outside of New Orleans had no concept of the amount of people without transportation, people who were trapped while the city flooded. I would like to think that local and state officials would have a better understanding of their area's demographics. Someone should have contacted the Department of Homeland Security right away to make sure they were on their way. Meteorologists told us that this hurricane was coming, so all the planning should have been done before it hit. But apparently, that did not happen.
There is one consolation and that is that private citizens have more on the ball than their elected officials. The outpouring of generousity from people around the world is truly touching. Even Afghanistan, a nation that has experienced plenty of hardship, has pledged $100,000 in aid. Germany, Great Britain and Russia have pledged money outside of their NATO contributions for Hurricane Katrina disaster relief.
Perhaps it is because the leaders of these nations realize that the rebuilding efforts will require serious environmental protections, ones that began to be implemented in 1995 under the leadership of President Clinton, but have been significantly cut under the Bush administration. To find out more about the need to rebuild Louisiana's coast, visit http://www.crcl.org/
This site is also functioning to further relief efforts in the region devastated by Katrina.
As someone who teaches communication, I understand that listening is vital. The greatest failure in communication was that of the Bush administration, failing to listen to scientists who warned that New Orleans would would be covered in water if action was not taken to restore the Louisiana coastline. It is too bad that a disaster has to serve as a wake-up call.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hello fellow blogger,

I have been reading your blog as well as many others. I have found your site material overall very intriguing, yet I want to ask you as well as others, let's all remember the victims of hurricane Katrina and how they could use all of our support to re-build their lives. So let's pitch - in and donate, I've included information on how we all can get involved on my site. So, show you care and join with me at my Office Products site. You'll be glad you helped, I know I feel good helping!

EDW said...

Thank you for your comment. I visited your site, and the simple act of linking to the Red Cross is helpful. The need for relief will go on long after people are relocated and the city is dewatered. The Bush-Clinton Trust Fund is there to continue to help fund the rebuilding of the Gulf Coast region. Right now, people are generously giving money, but the need is greater than just a financial one. I am helping organize a blood drive on the UW-Stevens Point campus and offering a room in my home for one of the victims. This is just a small way a person can help bring relief to those in need. Of course there is a greater need to help find jobs for New Orleans citizens who will not be able to return to their homes for a year. I would like to ask business owners to consider offering these people work and help them to relocate. In this way, we can turn tragedy into something that inspires hope.