I have to say that the chaos in New Orleans has really blown me away. Why are people still dying on the streets of New Orleans four days after the hurricane passed? As incompetent as I think that our Federal government's leadership is, I didn't think it was this bad. I mean, years after 9/11 we should be prepared for this sort of massive catastrophe, man-made or not. What's going on in the South is just insane. We've got a live feed of local television here at Yahoo! and it's just incredible to see what's happening on the ground. So incredibly mismanaged.
I'm sorry, you can't blame the people of New Orleans for living there, like some people have online. Everyone in the Bay Area - in most of California really - live on massive earthquake faults. Saying we shouldn't live in this beautiful area because some day we might have a natural disaster just doesn't work. What does work is preparation, as the catastrophe in New Orleans has shown us.
I bought a "Earthquake backpack" at Safeway a while back, and in it are instructions on stuff to fill it up with (it comes with first aid stuff, batteries, and not much else) and I never did. So, I think this weekend I'm going to go to CostCo and spend a few hundred dollars on canned goods, bottles of water, etc. to shove in the back of my garage for the day that something like this happens here in the Bay Area when transportation and communication lines break down after a disaster, and the rest of the nation looks on in dumb shock and takes half a week to start assisting.
I won't start in on the systemic problems where the poorest people were the ones that were not able to evacuate before the hurricane, and were essentially ignored for 24-48 hours after as well. Under President Bush the poverty rate in the U.S. has risen to an incredible 12.5% of the nation. We're now watching the consequences of that massive number.
Think about yourself being in this same situation and donate.