Friday, August 26, 2011


I've gotten several storm warnings from UNH in the past week or so (wait...did I really graduate? Now I'm not so sure...). The East Coast is preparing for Hurricane Irene. Non-residents of the Jersey Shore are being evacuated. Lists of storm essentials are being spread across the Internet, and I am watching Treme.

Treme, for those of you on whom I have not already forced the show, is an HBO series begun in 2010 by the creators of The Wire, and is centered on life in post-Katrina New Orleans--specifically the Treme neighborhood. The show begins three months after the storm, when thousands of people were still missing, housing projects for the city's poorer (and, generally speaking, Blacker) populations were still boarded up--despite minimal flood & wind damage--effectively allowing only the wealthy (and often white) New Orleanians to return to the city.

And, at the moment, the entire nation is mobilizing to evacuate the people from the Eastern seaboard, with special attention paid to New York, arguably the seat of our nation's wealth and power. And white people.

So, perhaps I am being cynical. Perhaps I am over-emphasizing the racial aspect of Hurricane Katrina, and underestimating the degree to which a nation can learn from its past mistakes. But lingering outright doubts tell me otherwise. Somehow, I feel that Hurricane Katrina or no, a Category 2 or 3 hurricane hitting the business and financial epicenter of America would take hold of the nation's attention and instigate a preparedness that quite possibly would have had no precedence in our nation's history. But a Category 5? Hitting a vulnerable coastline populated by African Americans and the nation's poor? All we have for that is hindsight.

1 comment:

lindsey kay said...

one of the actors from that series was just found dead floating in the mississippi...