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Copyright 2005 Mumia Abu-Jamal/Prison Radio

"Katrina's Rage "

  rec 9-4-05  


1)3:24 Short Essay MP3

2) 4:26 Long Essay Mp3

KATRINA'S RAGE
===============
[Col. Writ. 9/1/05] Copyright '05 Mumia Abu-Jamal

   It is virtually impossible to witness the harrowing scenes coming out of America's Gulf Coast, without being stunned by the imagery of destruction, loss, and desperation.

   For all intents and purposes, the bowl-like city of New Orleans has been blown off the map, remade part of Lake Ponchartrain, which broke its earthen bonds, and, fed by the watery fuel brought by Hurricane Katrina, spread its sodden affluence over 80% of the city.

   Other gulf cities, like Biloxi, and Gulfport, Mississippi also suffered from the wrath of Katrina.

   The natural disaster almost dwarfs everything that came before it, in recent memory, for the sheer devastation wrought on a major American city.

   People, by the thousands, were stranded on their roofs, waiting, sometimes for days, until being rescued.  Others waded in the water, walking through swirling waters that would've defeated the best of cars, in search of food, or water, or a dry place to rest.

   But, as ever, disasters have a way of revealing deep truths about people.

   In the American context, the devastation brought by Katrina revealed the deep chasm that continues to exist between Americans on the basis of race and class.  For days leading up to landfall, the nation's media warned people to drive away from the areas of lowest elevation, which were susceptible to flooding.

   What's wrong with that?  How about the often ignored fact that there are millions of people who watch TV, who can't afford a car?  What were they to do?

   It was they, the city's poorest, mostly Black residents of the region, who were stuck.

   They, for the most part, took to their rooftops, or barricaded themselves in attics.  They had no way out, and they bore, and are still bearing, the brunt of Katrina's blind fury.

   They walked, if they could, to the New Orleans Superdome, where people survived the raging winds and waters of Katrina, only to emerge to chaos.

   They had nothing, and could return to nothing.

   The infamous New Orleans police virtually disappeared, and, as in many states, the so-called National Guard had its strength sapped by their unwise deployment to Iraq.  Many, if they are lucky enough to return, will return to the wastelands of this 'New' New Orleans, their homes washed away into a silty sea.

   Dead bodies, of elderly, and sick were left to ripen and rot in the Louisiana sun, beside the shredded cupola of the Superdome.

   For those people of means, it was possible to outrun the disaster.

   For many others, the poor, the elderly, the ill, they were left to the vagaries of fate: no water; no food; no electricity; and no real hope that there was any appreciable help coming.

   And people are shocked that looting broke out?

   Should they have simply starved in silence, waiting for the illusion of 'help' that may never have come?

   Over a century ago, the great British writer, Charles Dickens, wrote *A Tale of Two Cities* (1859).  And like 19th century London, New Orleans, (and many other places) is a city divided against itself.  It is rich and poor.  It is white and Black.  It is those who are able to escape and those who can't.  Those who can flee the coming storm, and those who are trapped.

   And the real truth is that, while it's New Orleans today, it could just as easily be New York tomorrow, or Jersey City, or Philadelphia.

   Some people are served.  Others are forgotten.

   The raging winds, and surging surf of Hurricane Katrina washed up these ugly bones.

   Hurricane Katrina showed us all the frailty of life, the smallness of man, and the vast powers of Nature.  It showed us that the storms raging in our souls, in our psyches, can be just as deadly and dangerous.


Copyright 2005 Mumia Abu-Jamal

 

 

[Check out Mumia's latest: *WE WANT FREEDOM:
A Life in the Black Panther Party*, from South
End Press (http://www.southendpress.org); Ph.
#1-800-533-8478.]
==============================================>

  [Check out Mumia's latest: *WE WANT FREEDOM:
A Life in the Black Panther Party*, from South
End Press (http://www.southendpress.org); Ph.
#1-800-533-8478.]
===============================

"When a cause comes along and you know in your bones that it is
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========================================

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==============================================>

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The Power of Truth is Final — Free Mumia!

PLEASE CONTACT:
International Concerned Family & Friends of MAJ
P.O. Box 19709
Philadelphia, PA 19143
Phone - 215-476-8812/ Fax - 215-476-6180
E-mail - AND OFFER YOUR SERVICES!

Send our brotha some LOVE and LIGHT at:
Mumia Abu-Jamal
AM 8335
SCI-Greene
175 Progress Drive
Waynesburg, PA 15370

WE WHO BELIEVE IN FREEDOM CAN *NOT* REST!!

Submitted by: Sis. Marpessa