Failure to rebuild the city of New Orleans?

6 Dec

 

I believe the city of New Orleans has definitely not failed to rebuild.  ABC News did a special on post Hurricane Katrina, which was five years after the hurricane that brought up many points. More than 90% of New Orleans population has returned to the city, and 1.2 million people call New Orleans home again. Although, of the 9th ward, only 25% have returned. Yes, that is sad but would you really want to return to a place where it was devastating in the first place? I don’t blame the people who lived there before not to come back when they could potentially find happiness somewhere else. I remember hearing in class about jobs and how there is a lack of them down there now, but that is not true. Over the past five years, more than 100,000 jobs have been gained and retained; most of those jobs are in the education and construction industry.

The unemployment rate in New Orleans is lower that the nations! That is a huge deal and says a lot about their economy now. They have better employment now than they did before the storm.  Furthermore, because of tourism, Mardi Gras 2010 has the highest number of tourists to date! Slowly, New Orleans is growing. Many complained about the federal government not helping out and spending enough, well I think 42 billion dollars is a whole lot of money and quite possibly sufficient to help with aid to fixing homes, schools, roads, disaster relief, medical and most importantly the levees. Obviously after a huge disaster like Katrina, any place is going to take time to rebuild. It just will never happen overnight and honestly I think that is what many of the New Orleanians were thinking that was going to happen. One thing I really question, we have watched so many movies in class about Katrina victims but I have yet to see a white person complain. There is no way that this hurricane only affected black people. Why is it that there is so much pity on them? I am just trying to see both sides of this story when we usually are only shown one. Why are we only shown the negatives when there are clearly positives?

 

Flaherty states, “For those back in the city, at times it felt like difference of race and class had washed away”, I believe that that statement is a good indicator of how people join together in a time of need. Both races and many classes were affected one way or another and usually when a huge disaster occurs people put aside their differences and come together. He also goes on to say “Federal dollars were assigned to homeowners but not to renter”, is it not apparent that money would go to them first, you have to go through so much to own a home but to rent one you really don’t. Of course money would go to homeowners first. I bet many of the homeowners had insurance while the renters did not. I am a renter myself and I do not have renters insurance on my house. It’s just not something you think of when you are renting. So that is probably why many homeowners were helped. If you work hard you make more money which in turn can make it possibly to buy a house, have nice things and buy insurance. Being lazy gets you nowhere. If you stop complaining and take action it is a whole lot more successful.

Check out this video… I don’t know how to upload it directly into the post.

http://abc.go.com/watch/rising-up-five-years-since-katrina/SH5582037/VD5582082/rising-up-five-years-since-katrina

 

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6 Responses to “Failure to rebuild the city of New Orleans?”

  1. Derek Anderson December 6, 2011 at 4:06 am #

    I like how you took a different spin on it and looked at the positive opposed to putting New Orleans in a bad light. The research is also there to back up the point you are trying to make. Also, it’s not ever going to be a quick fix, when such tragedies happen.

  2. djlwsu December 6, 2011 at 6:15 am #

    From http://louisianajusticeinstitute.blogspot.com/2011/10/poverty-skyrockets-in-new-orleans-65-of.html

    “Despite the billions in post-Katrina federal dollars for building schools, streets and bridges, and homes, the New Orleans poverty rate has actually increased back to the highest level since 1999. The survey revealed that 27% of New Orleans adults now live in poverty and 42% of children”

    “When President George Bush waived the prevailing wage provisions of the Davis-Bacon Act following Katrina, he provided employers with a financial incentive to hire low-wage outside temporary workers. State contracts to rebuild storm-damaged schools have provided little employment for black storm victims. The new rise in poverty can be attributed in part to the exclusion of local blacks from recovery jobs, including rebuilding school facilities and school operations. It is self-defeating to attempt to solve the long-term public education problems while children and their parents are pushed deeper into poverty by education agency employment and contracting policies.”

    “But what is truly stunningly is that the survey indicates that that while there are several thousand African American males ages 12 to 15 years old living in poverty, the survey could not find a single white male in the same age bracket in poverty” — How does racism and white privilege operate here and how might that impact differential levels of protest?

    I also wonder how race and class fit into your discussion of home ownership? How does the information provided here challenge the claims that inequality is all about hard work and laziness: http://foodandcommunityfellows.org/digest/article/racism-food-policy-new-orleans; http://www.gnocdc.org/articles/lending.html; and http://blog.nola.com/guesteditorials/2008/10/underlying_collapse_a_legacy_o.html

    You also seem to equate financial success with hard work – do you have evidence of this? How do you account for the working poor? How do you account for the lack of money and residential security of workers in Florida tomato fields. What does this article tell us: http://www.engagedforsuccess.com/2011/08/31/new-orleans-%E2%80%93-the-working-poor/, http://www.fair.org/index.php?page=2933, and http://dissidentvoice.org/2008/03/half-new-orleans-poor-permanently-displaced-failure-or-success/

    You note, ““For those back in the city, at times it felt like difference of race and class had washed away” — what is the context of this statement; how does it fit with his larger argument and most importantly he notes how race and class matter each and every day

    In the end, how do you set up a binary and how might we push beyond the binary

  3. Alex December 9, 2011 at 3:05 am #

    I know the point you are trying to get across is too look at the positive side of things with post-katrina. But it’s hard to see all the positive when many “poor people” are becoming invisible under all this reconstruction. You say that why rebuild the 9th ward, well many of the people living could tell you it was a harsh place to live, but at the end it was their home. I bet it’s hard for some people to see other locations being rebuild without a problem and again and again their homes being left behind. I feel after we watch the movie today in class, it shows a sense of emotion and relation too what a person calls home. Again, I feel looking at the whole issue of things can really help determine if things are actually looking better for many of the people who were affected by Katrina. Like I mentioned, there is a whole group of people that are not being represented in the news and are not seeing the benefits that others are.

    • alyssamrich December 10, 2011 at 6:11 pm #

      So are you telling me that if you lived in the 9th ward where basically everything was washed away with not very many people left, especially if your family members died, that you would want to go back and raise a family in the same place that once tore down your previous family down?

  4. coltoonie December 10, 2011 at 8:05 am #

    It is easy to see how you can make a case for the Katrina effect being a drama infused pity case. I can grow tired with such repeated exposure to the injustices, government failure, federal aid failure, etc that have affected the people New Orleans since Katrina struck. I find it easy to get lost in the information and the images that surround the issue. However when I ask myself If I really understand the situation these people have faced, I have to admit I could never fully comprehend the entirety of the context. Of course there were many people who had gotten good jobs, made homes for themselves, had a family, bought insurance and all the other things that tell other people how successful they are. But are these people really better or more important than anyone else affected by Katrina?

    • alyssamrich December 10, 2011 at 6:09 pm #

      I never said one was better than the other…

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