Tango Diva : Travel Stories for Women, by Women

August 22nd, 2006
What the hell??

I just watched Spike Lee’s special “When the Levees Broke.” Do I live in America – the most powerful country in the world – or a freaking third-world armpit of a place?!?! I am so embarrassed by the way our government has handled this tragic event that happened almost a YEAR AGO! People have been dying from health-related issues in greater numbers because they don’t have any healthcare, now that the hospitals are gone and so are all their records. They are still finding bodies and insurance agencies are refusing to pay out on policies that have been active for years and years. One 80-year-old man has been paying All-State for 50 years and he got a check for just over $600. He lost EVERYTHING. I had no idea it was so bad. I have been so focused on the Middle East bullshit that I took my eyes and heart off New Orleans.

Basically, FEMA is a 4-letter F word and the president has been rowing up the river “de Nile” for the past 12 months. What the hell! I just read an AP report today that says, and I quote verbatim:

“Wednesday, August 23, 2006 (Washington):

The Marine Corps will soon begin ordering thousands of its troops back to active duty to fill a shortage of volunteers for Iraq and Afghanistan. Up to 2,500 Marines will be brought back at a time, and there is no cap on the total number who may be forced back into service as the military helps fight the war on terror. The number of troops in Iraq has climbed back to 138,000, the prevailing number for much of last year. Escalating violence in Baghdad has led military leaders to increase the US presence there. The Army, meanwhile, has issued orders recalling about 10,000 soldiers so far, but many of those may be granted exemptions. (AP)”


WAIT! Those troops could be in New Orleans helping our civilians, our people, our family members, our friends, our Americans. I am not ever going to tell you how I feel about the war in Iraq, or the money we have wasted there (when we could be fixing Louisiana and educating our children) I am so disgusted by the whole mess. I am embarrassed to be an American right now. So, I challenge all of us to do something. Register to vote, read the news, find out how your congressmen and Senators stand on important issues and make sure you know where you stand in all this. Remember Divas, knowledge is power!

If you know of reputable service providers that are assisting Katrina victims, please post here.

3 thoughts on “What the hell??

  1. Oh and we are spending $8 billion a month in Iraq. That’s $2 billion each week, $267 million each day, or $11 million each hour. For what we spend in three weeks, we could make needed improvements in order to properly secure our public transportation systems. For what we spend in five days, we could put radiation detectors in all of our ports. And for two days in Iraq, we could screen all air cargo.

  2. After organizing a diaper/clothes drive at work last fall and donating money, I, too have since been distracted by the war and my sheer horror at our current administration. But a photo essay in this week’s Time magazine (“Reaching for the Light”, August 28) reminded me how much we still need to do. Among the stats cited were that 353,000 homes in the Gulf Coast Region were destroyed and more than 113,000 families still live in FEMA-provided trailers.

    But I saw a wonderful segment on the news the other day about the efforts of Hands On in New Orleans. The Hands On Network is helping organize long term rebuilding efforts in areas affected by the hurricanes, and the majority of the work is done by volunteers. And if you don’t have time to help build, you can still donate: http://www.handsonneworleans.org/

  3. Just after Hurricane Katrina hit, MoveOn members and others stepped up to provide a roof, a bed and hope to more than 30,000 evacuees as part of MoveOn’s Hurricane Housing effort.

    Today, we’re launching our new book–It Takes A Nation: How Strangers Became Family–which tells the stories of the families involved. It’s a beautiful book, featuring amazing and moving first-person interviews with Katrina evacuees and the donors who took them in, and evocative photos of the folks involved and the aftermath of the flood. Senator Barack Obama wrote the forward–and a note to all of you about it, below.

    To commemorate Katrina, we’re donating every cent of the profits to the progressive group ACORN, which is working to protect evacuees’ rights and rebuild New Orleans right. If you donate $20 today to help Katrina relief efforts, we’ll send you a copy of It Takes a Nation (which retails for $25) for free.

    You can learn more about the book, check out some of the photos and interviews, and make a donation, at:


    Thanks for all you do,

    —Eli Pariser, Executive Director
    MoveOn.org Civic Action
    Monday, August 28th, 2006

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