SURBER • US — When 140 280 characters just aren't enough

Katrina

Posted

I know that a lot of people lost everything in this disaster, and I certainly feel for them. I am also more proud of being a Texan than normal, as our state has taken the lead on helping out the refugees. However, I just wouldn’t be me if I didn’t point out some of the things that bother me about everything.

First is the people who claim “This is our tsunami”. Last year’s tsunami happened so quickly that no one knew what was happening until the wave was 10 meters or so from them. With a hurricane we had four days notice. Also, the tsunami decimated 13 countries (if I remember right) while Katrina’s main destruction was confined to two states. It is typical American arrogance to believe that the suffering, however real, of our citizens is anywhere near the Asian tsunami.

Second, they should know better than to live there! For years people have known that New Orleans was the city most likely to be devastated by a hurricane, due to the fact that the city is entirely below sea level — the residents even has a phrase worked out for if it happened, “filling the bowl”, decades ago. Why anyone would know that and stay in the city is beyond me. For some reason people are drawn to dangerous locations — Naples will be almost entirely destroyed the next time Vesuvius erupts, Budapest is one of the most populated cities in the country and is already overdue for an earthquake, California is on one of the most active above-ground fault lines in the world.

Third, why didn’t people leave when the NWS first announced that a hurricane was coming? I know roads were probably jammed, but four days is enough time to find other ways to leave too, or at least head for the stadium being used as a shelter. If you think that you can stay in your house and win a battle with nature, you have it coming when nature hands you your balls.

I still feel incredibly bad for everyone this has affected, and am doing the little I can to help them, but I feel the need to point out that most of the damage, or at least death, could have been prevented. Will it be next time?