Aug 26 2015
The story of this weekend will be looking back at the events and and the coverage of Hurricane Katrina and the impact on New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. I was in France when the storm hit and was only remotely aware of the storm and the suffering at the time. We all have learned more since that time and a great way to review the coverage will be available at the Newseum, one of my new favorite places in Washington D.C.
If you can’t make it there you can view the web version of the exhibit and listen to an interview of the Director of Exhibit Development, Cathy Trost on Talk of the Nation. Times-Picayune photographer Ted Jackson also tells of his experience as one of the first responders to the developing crisis.
I was in New Orleans six months after Katrina and made a visit to the Lower Ninth Ward district, and was shocked at how much devastation was still present. The entire neighbor was mostly deserted and it was possible to wander into many of the homes to witness the destruction.
This Wizard of Oz looking scene resulted from houses floating and then dropping
This lifting and dropping effect was present inside houses as well. I saw entire sofas and refrigerators that appeared to be inside a home that a giant picked up and shook like an 8-ball. Many of them looked as though the occupants walked away and never returned.
This hat was either unmoved from the bedpost or was placed back there after the water receded.
Outside the signs showed the extent of the destruction…
and the toll on pets.
Salvation will relay on forces beyond FEMA – even doing more than a “Heck of a job” this time.
Many people see that the Katrina destruction was the result of natural disaster. Not so says actor Harry Shearer. In his documentary, The Big Uneasy, Shearer says much of the destruction in New Orleans was man-made and preventable — and largely the fault of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The movie will be shown in theaters on Monday Aug, 30th across the country for one night only. Check the website for local listings.
Andrew Curtis of the Department of American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California headed a team that documented the slow progression of rebuilding the Lower 9th Ward. This video comparisons can be seen in the New York Times.