Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Katrina Relief

Tonight we watched part of the NBC special on Hurricane Katrina. I say a part of the special because the images and stories on the screen made me weep. The devastation that hit Mississippi and Louisiana is so deep and intense that it is hard to imagine -- seeing the special was important but it was so effective that it was impossible for me to watch the entire thing. Some people who remained behind in the affected regions may have done so out of personal choice but what struck me today was that without a vehicle of their own and money enough to evacuate, many of these people had no choice at all. They had to stay and accept what fate threw their way. For so many of these people their lives will never be the same, especially since so many of them were starting off at the poverty level or below in the first place.

I know that life is complex and that other areas of the world have situations that are experiencing situations that are even more desperate than this. The effects of this hurricane really bring home the kinds of sorrow that are experienced around the world on a daily basis. They also reveal the kind of kindness that strangers can show to strangers, which is heartwarming and beautiful. If you have anything that you could spare for the people going through this tragedy I encourage you to play a part, even if remotely, in making a stranger's life just a little bit easier during this terrible time.

(Photo above taken from the NY Times website)

30 Comments:

At 9/01/2005 12:53 AM, Blogger puremood said...

Devastating. I just wish all those who stayed wouldn't have... that only makes the death toll rise. I think there is always a way to go - just gotta do it. It would be HARD to leave your stuff behind but something you have to look at the big picture. Tho, I'm a beliver that all happens for a reason and if someone wasn't spared - they weren't suppose to be and if someone was, that they were suppose to be.

I hope these folks hit hard will find peace and comfort durin this tragic time. I couldn't imagine - I pray God will lay his healing upon them and provide for them all.

Hello, Michele sent me.

 
At 9/01/2005 1:24 AM, Blogger Laura GF said...

Puremood, the problem is that many of the people who stayed behind did not have the resources available to them to get out. I don't believe that it was a matter of them not wanting to leave their things behind (again, for most people). I have a difficult time believing that there is a god that would bring this hardship to people already suffering such poverty that they were powerless to leave. That said, I do appreciate you stopping by today and taking the time to leave your comment. It is important to hear people's different perspectives!

 
At 9/01/2005 5:37 AM, Anonymous Raindrop Fairy said...

Hello, Michele sent me.

I agree with Laura GF. I don't think it's about their stuff. If they had the rescurces to leave, then most of them would.

 
At 9/01/2005 6:29 AM, Blogger Pieces of Me said...

Hey congrats on being MIchele's site of the day!! For those people who thought they would wait out a cat 5 hurricane that was coming right towards them I dont understand...For those who were stuck my heart goes out...My heart goes out to every baby and child over there who doesn't have a choice...I would be swimming or walking or something...I dont know I couldnt imagine staying there waving something white...My hubby wants to go over there and help so badly...I say get all the children out first then women and then men....Children need water, shelter, food, etc before any adult...I would figure out a way to get out!! TTYL

 
At 9/01/2005 7:01 AM, Blogger Star said...

First of all, congrats on being the site of the day.Does it seem to you that it is taking along time to get help to these people.?I realize that it is worse than what they have experienced brfore, but they knew it would be bad and yet we are just now organizing the relief efforts and calling out teh National Guard.

 
At 9/01/2005 7:23 AM, Blogger dena said...

The entire scenario is just too much to believe. I'm just donating cash right now, since that's what they are asking for, but will continue helping as the process goes on. I have tons of clothes, food, household items that I will send that way once these poor people have someplace to put the stuff.

 
At 9/01/2005 7:47 AM, Blogger kenju said...

This is so well written, Laura. I could not watch that whole show because the scenes are too sad. It is hard to comprehend what those pooe people are going through; we should all help in whatever way we can.

Michele sent me.

 
At 9/01/2005 8:18 AM, Blogger yellojkt said...

michele sent me.

The disaster is just horrific. The worst is yet to come because of the shortages and lack of drinking water. Fortunately, the United States has the most responsive and helpful people on earth.

 
At 9/01/2005 8:23 AM, Blogger Shannin said...

Here via Michele's M&G. I watched the same special last night. I am just rivited to the coverage. I was in NO in 2002 and stayed at the Hyatt, so seeing the photo with the windows blown out really hits home. I wished they had the foresight to order the 475 buses they are using now to get people out before the hurricane hit. I don't want to say they were ill-prepared, but I don't think anyone knew this was going to happen.

 
At 9/01/2005 10:36 AM, Blogger Sonja said...

Hi Michele sent me.

What a sad day for so many folks. I know we're all just feeling so helpless looking at our TVs right now and wondering what we can do to help. Thanks for offering some tips.

 
At 9/01/2005 10:53 AM, Blogger Finn said...

Well said. I cannot watch the news this week without crying. I have made my donation to the Red Cross and keep these people in my thoughts and prayers.

Hi - Michele sent me today.

 
At 9/01/2005 10:56 AM, Blogger Suburban Turmoil said...

I watched the show and cried, too. I feel like New Orleans will never be the same, and I think many of those residents will never return. If they can't come back for four months, they'll just find jobs and make lives in other cities. I feel horrible for those still trapped in their homes and shelters there. It's truly a crisis.

Michele sent me.

 
At 9/01/2005 11:00 AM, Blogger Trista said...

Hello, Michele sent me.

I've been following the Katrina disaster on the news every morning, but there was something about last nights special that really got to me. It was absolutely heart-wrenching to watch.

What's even worse are those people taking advantage of the situation and looting. I understand those people stealing food and water because they need those things. But the people stealing guns and shooting at the helicopters trying to rescue people infuriate me.

My heart and prayers go out to those in the south.

 
At 9/01/2005 11:03 AM, Anonymous terrilynn said...

Hi there, Michele sent me today. I am another one who could not bear to watch the show all the way through. It's just heartbreaking.

I've been reading a LiveJournal from someone who is in NOLA and he says that it's basically Lord of the Flies there now, just absolute chaos. Seems that the veneer of civilization is mighty thin when folks have nothing left to lose, and that makes me very sad.

 
At 9/01/2005 11:24 AM, Blogger Dave said...

Hello, Michele sent me.

It's sad that people feel they have to stay behind to protect their stuff from looters and scavengers. It's the worst in human nature that makes such a tragedy even worse and more deadly. How many lives will be lost as a result?

 
At 9/01/2005 11:29 AM, Anonymous MissMeliss said...

It is always the people who can least afford it who are the most affected by these disasters. Beautiful entry.


(Hello, Michele sent me.)

 
At 9/01/2005 12:07 PM, Anonymous Nancy said...

I watched that show. I am glued to the TV every chance I get. Feels like 9/11 all over again, only worse. I cannot even imagine what I would do in that situation.
I have sent my $$ to the Red Cross.

great post, Michele sent me.

 
At 9/01/2005 12:21 PM, Anonymous colleen said...

Seems like things are stirred up and happening worse than ever. It's hard to absorb. Saying Hi via Michele's today.

 
At 9/01/2005 1:13 PM, Blogger used*to*be*me* said...

Seems rather cheesy to say I'm here from Michele...

I've tried not to watch the television because I fear that much like 9/11, I'll become addicted to watching and that simply isn't healthy. I've got a few things in the works for helping out and making donations but other than a posting on my blog this week, I'm trying to stay away. I simply feel so horrible for the people out there and the fact that at least after 9/11 they could go home. These folks have no home anywhere. My prayers go to all who are in the danger zones, who have family they cannot contact, or who are like me and just praying for everyone.

 
At 9/01/2005 1:48 PM, Anonymous mooalex said...

We just have to keep praying and giving. (here from Michele)

 
At 9/01/2005 2:14 PM, Blogger J Anderson said...

I hope you where obeying copyright laws by copying it.

Michele sent me

 
At 9/01/2005 3:57 PM, Blogger Carl V. said...

It is true that some had no choice in the matter but as unfortunate are those (including relatives of mine) who easily had the means to evacuate and were too foolish to do so.

I've gotten to the point where I can hardly watch anymore because of the disgusting behavior of a certain segment of humanity that take this opportunity to benefit from the situation. Its really deplorable.

And by the way, 'hi' from Michele!

 
At 9/01/2005 4:30 PM, Blogger buffi said...

My in-laws stayed in spite of the fact that they had ample resources to evacuate. I do not understand why they stayed and I have mixed feelings about their plight. I love them and I am glad that they are okay. But also am angry at the danger that they put themselves and their children in and the turmaiol that we and the rest of the family have been in since Katrina hit. I do feel most sorry for those who had no way to evacuate. It must be horrifying to face what they are going thru.

Congrats on being Michele's SOTD!

 
At 9/01/2005 4:35 PM, Anonymous Claire said...

Hi, I'm here via Michele's today. I echo your sentements, such a beautiful post about such an atrocious tragedy.

 
At 9/01/2005 5:21 PM, Anonymous mary said...

Hi, Michele sent me.
I actually stopped in yesterday, too, to take a peek at your recent tofu and noodle salad recipe. Thank you for posting that, it looks yummy.

In the blogosphere, there has been an endless whirlwind of articulate posts surrounding the Katrina aftermath, yours included. I think it's important to remember as we watch what's happening on tv that all of us who blog, who even have computers, are in a completely different "American life" than the majority of the people - very poor people- who had to stay behind and simply couldn't evacuate from NO. My heart goes out to everyone there.

Our family has donated. Thanks for a great post, Laura.

 
At 9/01/2005 7:18 PM, Blogger srp said...

Hello, Michele sent me today.
Many were stuck, many stayed who had transportation out, then the levees broke and it was too late.
They did start positioning relief before the hurricane. The problem is not that it isn't there, they can't get in. People don't understand how much of Mississippi was affected. Normally MS would be the first to respond to New Orleans. But 75% of MS has no power.

We lived in Columbus,MS, they got 50 mph wind steady and 6 in of rain. Part of Columbus is still without power. Jackson, Hattiesburg & Meridian have loss of power and phones. It will take time to get poles back up.

We had a storm that covered only our small town. It took four hours to drive 5 miles to our house because so many trees were down. All the power poles had to be replaced, even with crews from all over the area, it took 9 days to get power, two weeks to get phone. And that storm was nothing, not even one hundredth as bad as this.

The disaster is so wide spread, I'm amazed the relief effort has gone as well as it has. If they could control the hoodlums with guns shooting at people trying to help them, it would go faster. There is no excuse for that.

 
At 9/01/2005 7:30 PM, Anonymous E said...

Nicely written. It's heartbreaking. Here from Michele's and I'm really glad I came.

 
At 9/01/2005 10:31 PM, Anonymous Suzy said...

HI michelle sent me. I loved your post and the challenge to reach out. We all need to do that, don't we? I am praying for all those that were so devastated, and lost so much.

 
At 9/01/2005 10:53 PM, Blogger Lish said...

Hi, Michele sent me. This is a wonderful post. I have already donated to the Red Cross, and I really hope that others will also. My heart goes out to all those that are suffering due to this tragedy.
Lish

 
At 9/02/2005 1:46 AM, Blogger Laura GF said...

Thank you all for your thoughtful, generous comments today. It means a lot to me that you stopped by! I'm so glad to hear that so many of you are donating to support the victims of this hurricane (and the ongoing effects).

 

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