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Katrina victims testify on racism's role
AP/mlive.com ^ | 12/6/2005, 5:58 p.m. ET | LARA JAKES JORDAN

Posted on 12/06/2005 3:25:07 PM PST by quantim

WASHINGTON (AP) — Black survivors of Hurricane Katrina said Tuesday that racism contributed to the slow disaster response, at times likening themselves in emotional congressional testimony to victims of genocide and the Holocaust.

The comparison is inappropriate, according to Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla.

"Not a single person was marched into a gas chamber and killed," Miller told the survivors.

"They died from abject neglect," retorted community activist Leah Hodges. "We left body bags behind."

Angry evacuees described being trapped in temporary shelters where one New Orleans resident said she was "one sunrise from being consumed by maggots and flies." Another woman said military troops focused machine gun laser targets on her granddaughter's forehead. Others said their families were called racial epithets by police.

"No one is going to tell me it wasn't a race issue," said New Orleans evacuee Patricia Thompson, 53, who is now living in College Station, Texas. "Yes, it was an issue of race. Because of one thing: when the city had pretty much been evacuated, the people that were left there mostly was black."

Not all lawmakers seemed persuaded.

"I don't want to be offensive when you've gone though such incredible challenges," said Rep. Christopher Shays, R-Conn. But referring to some of the victims' charges, like the gun pointed at the girl, Shays said: "I just don't frankly believe it."

"You believe what you want," Thompson said.

The hearing was held by a special House committee, chaired by Rep. Tom Davis, R-Va., investigating the government's preparations and response to Katrina. It was requested by Rep. Cynthia McKinney, D-Ga., a member of the Congressional Black Caucus.

"Racism is something we don't like to talk about, but we have to acknowledge it," McKinney said. "And the world saw the effects of American-style racism in the drama as it was outplayed by the Katrina survivors."

The five white and two black lawmakers who attended the hearing mostly sat quietly during two and a half hours of testimony. But tempers flared when evacuees were asked by Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., to not compare shelter conditions to a concentration camp.

"I'm going to call it what it is," said Hodges. "That is the only thing I could compare what we went through to."

Of five black evacuees who testified, only one said he believed the sluggish response was the product of bad government planning for poor residents — not racism.


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: Louisiana
KEYWORDS: 109th; katrina; katrinaprobe
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To: caryatid

In your first instance though, the children were missing from the hurricane. They weren't children in shelters looking for families, all of those children were accounted for and resolved with family. My observation was the separation from caregivers because there was a much smaller number that were listed as last seen and heard from with their parents or one of their parents. I wonder how many caregivers were actually grandparents or other elder relatives that didn't evacuate. The way the circumstances were listed though, it gave the impression that the caregiver made it, or was the one who reported them as missing. The children who died are the victims that make me weep because they didn't have the choice to leave or stay.


51 posted on 12/06/2005 5:28:00 PM PST by WV Mountain Mama (I have a drink at night for my heart. Yeah, my heart, that's it.)
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To: WV Mountain Mama
To be fair, it was reported that there were instances of Rescue workers demanding that all babies and little ones be passed overhead to be the first on rescue vehicles.

In your first instance though, the children were missing from the hurricane.

My "first instance" [above] is a description of the evacuation of the Superdome. I was not there, I can only rely upon reports from people on the ground. I would have to attribute any separation of children from parents/caregivers to well-intentioned, but ill conceived, methods of those directing the evacuation, not to the evacuees, themselves. [I am not sure what you mean by "missing from the hurricane"].

In the segment of society of which we speak, it is quite common for responsible grandparents [almost always grandmothers] to become caregivers to their grandchildren whose mothers are drug addicted or otherwise unable to care for the children they produce. The pattern of reproduction in the relevant population can mean that a grandmother may be in her 30s or 40s ... not necessarily elderly by anyone's standard.

Statistically, the number of child fatalities from the Hurricane is small. The overwhelming proportion of identified victims is elderly and disproportionately white compared to the {67.3% black/26.6% white ratio}, and {11.7% aged 65+ years/26.7% under 18 years} statistics of the population of the city. Only 6.9% of the population was under the age of 5. These facts have been under- or non-reported by the MSM.

I am unaware of any legitimate lists of large numbers of missing children. Bodies are still being found on an intermittent, occasional basis ... all that I read about are elderly folks.

I weep for all of the victims of this destructive hurricane ... whether elderly, children, white, black, or other. It has been a heartbreaking thing to watch unfold.

52 posted on 12/06/2005 6:29:03 PM PST by caryatid (Jolie Blonde, 'gardez donc, quoi t'as fait ...)
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To: quantim
I am beginning to regret the contribution i made for their relief.

Not totally, but sheeshe.. does this racism excuse EVER stop?

53 posted on 12/06/2005 6:44:19 PM PST by drc43 (Judges... Judges... get it done, then we can discuss priorities)
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To: drc43

I saw some of this hearing, and it was appalling. At one point they referred to the Causeway Concentration Camp (the Causeway leads from Jefferson Parish to the Northshore)where evidently some people ended up waiting to get out. Thankfully, some of the legislators were as appalled as I was hearing the comparison.


54 posted on 12/06/2005 6:50:02 PM PST by half-cajun
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To: half-cajun; Liz; Howlin; ALOHA RONNIE; RonDog
I saw some of this hearing, and it was appalling.

On C-Span 2 right now. The whole thing is a mess.

55 posted on 12/06/2005 6:56:12 PM PST by Libloather (Geena Davis isn't man enough to play Hillary on TV. Heck, BILL isn't man enough to play Hillary...)
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To: freema
Another woman said military troops focused machine gun laser targets on her granddaughter's forehead.

Military question; do any military-issue "machine guns" (given this woman's probably expertise on the subject, this could mean anything from an SMG to an assault rifle to a Vulcan) actually have laser sightings on them that paint a dot on the target, or is that just movie nonsense?

56 posted on 12/06/2005 7:27:05 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: Libloather
Yes, the only half-way lucid one is the man. They continuously talk about post-traumatic stress disorder(look for a law suit there). These people are absolutely nuts.
57 posted on 12/06/2005 7:28:27 PM PST by half-cajun
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To: billhilly
Because they do not act until being told what to do by their government masters, to be blunt.

They were told to get out. By the government. Several days in advance.

58 posted on 12/06/2005 7:31:43 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: SmoothTalker
Have a kid at 18? Blame whitey!

Try 12 or 13. It's a lot more common than you think.

59 posted on 12/06/2005 7:34:06 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: Gordongekko909

24 hours.


60 posted on 12/06/2005 7:35:37 PM PST by billhilly (John Murtha, ex Marine. Leading the charge of the Demoquits.)
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To: billhilly
It is really hard to be honest when it comes to race issues.

I do not find it at all difficult to be honest about race issues. The problem arises from not being able to speak the truth for fear of severe retribution from the PC brigade, at worst, or mere unfounded [but damaging] accusations of racism, at best.

61 posted on 12/06/2005 7:36:30 PM PST by caryatid (Jolie Blonde, 'gardez donc, quoi t'as fait ...)
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To: quantim
----Friggin amazing how all these people had no transportation to evacuate and yet ALL THESE CARS IN ALL THE PHOTOS.....Like I said in another thread, better run the Vehicle Identification Numbers and find out who these cars really belong to because either there must have been one hell of an Auto theft ring running out of there or they could have/should have evacuated when TOLD to.

***And this post is not directed to the folks who are from there trying to rebuild their lives. I am referring to the ones now trying to use a race card as an excuse for their own incompetence
62 posted on 12/06/2005 7:41:07 PM PST by WasDougsLamb (I refuse to have a battle of wits with an unarmed man)
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To: quantim

I googled "Leah Hodges" -- apparently she's a former Black Panther who was charged with attempted murder of five police officers (or "pigs" as she quaintly refers to them) in 1970 or so. If this is the same person, I wouldn't trust a word she says.


63 posted on 12/06/2005 7:42:05 PM PST by IrishRainy
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To: billhilly

That's funny, because I recall evacuating three days before Katrina hit.


64 posted on 12/06/2005 7:42:29 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: quantim

Here's my stock answer that always shuts up the libs:

NOLA had 450,000 residents, three quarters of which, or 337,000 were black. If ten thousand were left behind, that means that more than 327,000 smart black people climbed into their cars, hopped trains and planes and got the hell out! So what's racist about that?

Of the approximately ten thousand problem cases, how many were white? How many --black or white --have been absorbed into other communities? Who exactly is still sitting there whining?

Meanwhile, on the largely white Mississippi coast, which took the full force of the hurricane and suffered hideous loss of lives and property, neighbors are helping neighbors clean up and rebuild. Few cries of racism emanate from MS because people are busy putting their lives together.


65 posted on 12/06/2005 7:57:43 PM PST by Veto! (Opinions freely dispensed as advice)
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To: Popman
McKinney talks about racism like crack heads talk about crack

Excellent analogy! LOL

66 posted on 12/06/2005 8:02:31 PM PST by Veto! (Opinions freely dispensed as advice)
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To: billhilly

These hearings are good. They illustrate the futility of trying to restore and rehabilitate a hopeless situation.


67 posted on 12/06/2005 8:07:53 PM PST by ladyjane
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To: ladyjane

Please understand, the people you saw in that hearing today do not in ANY WAY represent the vast majority of people in New Orleans or Louisiana. I am embarrassed and insulted by them. No decent, thinking person claims them as their spokesperson.


68 posted on 12/06/2005 8:16:12 PM PST by WatchOutForSnakes
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To: WatchOutForSnakes

You have a valid point. They don't represent the vast majority of people from New Orleans. Unfortunately the media is playing up the plight of these NO refugees.


69 posted on 12/06/2005 8:21:31 PM PST by ladyjane
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To: Gordongekko909

This is my last try. I hate these pissing matches all the time. Neither you or I have seen all of the messages, although the media has, presumably. The following was from a WAFB TV report yesterday. That station is in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, home of Louisiana government.


"The mayor and the governor called for the mandatory evacuation for Katrina less than 24 hours before the storm hit, and one haunting sentence in the plan seemed to be all but forgotten:

"Approximately 100,000 citizens of New Orleans do not have means of personal transportation."

You can read the full story by doing a search of posts. I believe it was posted by LA Woman.


70 posted on 12/06/2005 8:28:04 PM PST by billhilly (John Murtha, ex Marine. Leading the charge of the Demoquits.)
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To: ladyjane
You are right, that is who they are showing and emphasizing but that helps make the point I've been trying to make on a lot of these threads. That being that a lot of people who aren't close to the area and only have second hand news or reports from the MSM are making judgements and pronouncements based on only part of the story, the part the mainstream media wants them to see. Therefore it isn't fair to judge all of N.O. or Louisiana by the partial reports.
71 posted on 12/06/2005 8:29:11 PM PST by WatchOutForSnakes
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To: quantim

Wrong, McKinny! Racism is something that you talk about all the time.

The black Mayor of New Orleans had the buses to evacuate all those stranded people. If racism played any part in his decision to not use the busses, it must have been because he insisted the buses be re-painted black, before using them.

Despite all the name calling and racial card playing horse sh*t the left keeps trying to spin into the equasion, the truth shines as bright as the sun-The screw ups were caused by the dumb ass, incompentent, democrat politicians of Louiseana, from the US Senate to the Governor, to the Mayor.


72 posted on 12/06/2005 8:29:18 PM PST by F.J. Mitchell (Okay, bring our troops home. But don't feign suprise when the terrorists tag along.)
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To: drc43
I am beginning to regret the contribution i made for their relief.

Me too, all of them.  Seems like these days a Katrina hurricane donation is somehow giving a pass for pathetic governing.

Just so it can happen again. It pains me to say that but I believe much will be learned but nothing will be done.

Liberals in the same bed with RINOs will accomplish nothing.

73 posted on 12/06/2005 8:41:24 PM PST by quantim (Detroit is the New Orleans of the north, settled by the French and ruined by liberals.)
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To: quantim

C-Span 2 starting another replay right now...


74 posted on 12/06/2005 9:04:10 PM PST by Libloather (If Hillary becomes president, what would her so-called *husband's private life include?)
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To: Libloather
YIKES!

Don't think they can glean enough collective IQ here to make a campaign commercial though.
75 posted on 12/06/2005 9:19:50 PM PST by quantim (Detroit is the New Orleans of the north, settled by the French and ruined by liberals.)
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To: IrishRainy

It is a well funded industry ... they just seem to keep on recycling the same people in different garb.


76 posted on 12/06/2005 10:51:43 PM PST by caryatid (Jolie Blonde, 'gardez donc, quoi t'as fait ...)
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To: Libloather

Because you pinged me to this, I turned this "hearing" on.

It was disgraceful. And that grown men and women sat there and let those horrible people lie and lie and lie, I am convinved this country has gone completely insane.


77 posted on 12/06/2005 11:03:57 PM PST by Howlin ("Victory is not a strategy. " ``Jack Murtha 11/18/05)
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To: WV Mountain Mama

I dont think a lot of N.O. is going to be rebuilt. Bush promised to rebuild the levees to the state they were in....but subsequent investigation has proven they were in very bad shape, with many failures.

The Federal Goverment will not built a levee system to counter another Category 4 hurricane.


78 posted on 12/06/2005 11:11:52 PM PST by BurbankKarl (NRA EPL)
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To: quantim
Yes, it was an issue of race. Because of one thing: when the city had pretty much been evacuated, the people that were left there mostly was black."

The people that were left there were too stupid to contemplate the meaning of SELF-RELIANCE.

79 posted on 12/06/2005 11:19:08 PM PST by Windsong (FighterPilot)
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To: quantim

Top ten ploys for squeezing money out of America for fountains, casinos, ghost cops, payoffs and outright graft:

10. The Corps of Engineers built bad levees, so the Federal Government must give us money.

9. FEMA was slow rescuing us, so the government should give us money.

8. If you don't give us money, you're a racist.

7. If you don't give us money, you're heartless.

6. Give us money or the Mississippi River will have to close.

5. If you don't give us money, you won't be able to buy gasoline for less than five dollars per gallon anymore.

4. The National Weather Service told black people not to evacuate, so we deserve some money.

3. If you don't give us money, shrimp cocktail will cost $10,000.

2. Our kids can't go to school because the buses are all flooded. Send us money.

1. If we don't get some money, we'll start eating each other again.


80 posted on 12/07/2005 2:26:45 AM PST by jeffers
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To: quantim

Someone in congress missed the mini teleprompt that said "Paid for by L Farrah Kahn and J Jackson."


81 posted on 12/07/2005 3:31:01 AM PST by chemicalman (Many have skeletons in their closets. In New Orleans, we have skeletons in our attics.)
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To: Gordongekko909

My understanding is that it is not just movie props. Some do, some don't. Which ones...I don't know.


82 posted on 12/07/2005 3:36:49 AM PST by freema (Proud Marine Mom-What fools they are who doubt the ability of liberty to triumph over despotism)
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To: quantim

Translated all this means is, appropriate apologies will consist of getting your check books out caucasians. It will never be enough, but you get to apologize anyway. We're used to you doing it.


83 posted on 12/07/2005 3:40:45 AM PST by RushLake (Baghdad minus saddam hussein = Detroit)
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To: pepperhead
These whackjobs hit every leftwing point imaginable. Halliburton, racism, concentration camps, shooting people when they left their homes, blowing up the levees, ethnic cleansing and no telling what else during the hearings.

Interesting, ain't it, that the MSM can't seem to report on that part...

84 posted on 12/07/2005 3:42:01 AM PST by mewzilla (Property must be secured or liberty cannot exist. John Adams)
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To: Gordongekko909; billhilly

I was watching the "Starting Over" show yesterday, where women review and remake their lives, with coaches. Fascinating show, BTW. One of the 'life coaches' was in Houston with Katrina 'victims' and gently but firmly let them hold it (the responsibility) about evacuating. She asked them why they didn't leave. Various reasons were given, honest ones. The coach said that this was a very valuable lesson - to never base a decision 'in hand' on what you've done or not done in the past, or what might or might not happen in the future. Act in your best interest in the now. This coach should testify. The sound bites of the testimonies I've seen on the news this morning are obscene portrayals of not 'owning' any damn thing.


85 posted on 12/07/2005 3:42:49 AM PST by freema (Proud Marine Mom-What fools they are who doubt the ability of liberty to triumph over despotism)
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To: WatchOutForSnakes; ladyjane

I wonder who chose these folks to testify.


86 posted on 12/07/2005 3:46:39 AM PST by freema (Proud Marine Mom-What fools they are who doubt the ability of liberty to triumph over despotism)
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To: F.J. Mitchell

"-The screw ups were caused by the dumb ass, incompentent, democrat politicians of Louiseana, from the US Senate to the Governor, to the Mayor."

Lest you forget the aspect of personal responsibility...let's include the dumb ass, incompetent, democrat residents, who, with a freight train barrelling down upon the neighborhood...sat on the porch and waited for a cab.


87 posted on 12/07/2005 3:49:49 AM PST by freema (Proud Marine Mom-What fools they are who doubt the ability of liberty to triumph over despotism)
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To: caryatid

I meant that your first instance was of childre that were evacuated to shelters, the children I am talking about were listed as missing and last seen or heard from before the hurricane hit, or separated from caretakers during the hurricane.

http://www.missingkids.com/missingkids/servlet/PageServlet?LanguageCountry=en_US&PageId=2077

Here is an example of what I am talking about, and I am sorry to believe that they did not survive. I hope the link works.

http://www.missingkids.com/missingkids/servlet/PubCaseSearchServlet?act=viewPoster&caseNum=1025317&orgPrefix=NCMC&searchLang=en_US


88 posted on 12/07/2005 5:49:31 AM PST by WV Mountain Mama (I have a drink at night for my heart. Yeah, my heart, that's it.)
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To: caryatid

BTW, my only point with the children victims is that they were not given the chance to leave because they were with people who either didn't understand what a cat 5 meant, they felt they were helpless because Big Brother didn't come and get them or they didn't believe the reports thinking the hurricane would turn at the last minute. That is what I feel bad about.


89 posted on 12/07/2005 5:54:57 AM PST by WV Mountain Mama (I have a drink at night for my heart. Yeah, my heart, that's it.)
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To: Right Cal Gal
"Why is he bailing out a pirogue with a go-cup?"

Cuz someone stole his rent car?

90 posted on 12/07/2005 5:57:17 AM PST by Boss_Jim_Gettys (Willing to compromise...NOT)
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To: freema

LOL! Good point and well said, freema.


91 posted on 12/07/2005 6:42:38 AM PST by F.J. Mitchell (Okay, bring our troops home. But don't feign suprise when the terrorists tag along.)
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To: F.J. Mitchell

I saw a sound bite of one of woman's testimony something to the effect, near tears and with much dramatics and loudness of voice, this morning that they're sitting around a fireplace (the only thing left of their house) trying to keep warm in DECEMBER and that the hurricane happened in AUGUST!!!!

Guess the dumb ass still hasn't learned anything.
I really wouldn't give her a stick.

If someone doesn't have enough sense to get in out of the cold. We can't always have our cake and eat it too. Perhaps she should have traded in whatever the plane fare was that was given to get her to DC and asked for a ticket to Florida.


92 posted on 12/07/2005 7:01:16 AM PST by freema (Proud Marine Mom-What fools they are who doubt the ability of liberty to triumph over despotism)
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To: freema

But freema, wouldn't it be a little cruel of us to tell these folks there is no Santa Claus, so close to Christmas?


93 posted on 12/07/2005 7:26:43 AM PST by F.J. Mitchell (Okay, bring our troops home. But don't feign suprise when the terrorists tag along.)
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To: freema

I don't know who chose these refugees to testify but if they thought they would extort more money out of donors they thought wrong. Their plan has backfired.


94 posted on 12/07/2005 7:52:13 AM PST by ladyjane
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To: F.J. Mitchell

http://www.ebaumsworld.com/images/tombstone.jpg


95 posted on 12/07/2005 7:56:42 AM PST by freema (Proud Marine Mom-What fools they are who doubt the ability of liberty to triumph over despotism)
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To: ladyjane

It was disgusting, the little bit I saw.


96 posted on 12/07/2005 7:58:05 AM PST by freema (Proud Marine Mom-What fools they are who doubt the ability of liberty to triumph over despotism)
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To: ladyjane

I believe Cynthia McKinney, the nutcase Congress woman from Georgia requested the hearing. Her agenda is certainly not to help N.O. or Louisiana. Her agenda is to push her claims of racism behind everything. So, I don't think she has any interest at all in helping with the recovery. We don't want her help.


97 posted on 12/07/2005 8:09:39 AM PST by WatchOutForSnakes
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Black people don't care about Bush.

98 posted on 12/07/2005 8:13:31 AM PST by evets (God bless president Bush!)
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To: Godebert

I usually can't stand to watch Shays because of his track record, but watched a few minutes of the hearings on C-SPAN, which was all I could take. A middle-aged black woman with a cloth wrapped around her head was claiming to be an eyewitness to the supposed bombing of the levee. Shays tried to find out how close she was to the place where the levee broke at the time, and she kept giving him a run-around (useless information to anyone not a resident of her block).


99 posted on 12/07/2005 8:26:06 AM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: WV Mountain Mama
[M]y only point with the children victims is that they were not given the chance to leave because they were with people who ...

... were unfit to have custody, care and control of those children. Perhaps, in the future, Social Services should screen custodians more carefully. And, remove children from the care of many of them. It would not make any difference ... as quickly as they were removed, they would be replaced by yet more children by the same mothers.

How easy do you think it would be for Social Services to go into those neighborhoods and remove those children from their custodians? There would be a firestorm of unprecedented proportion, by the Left, if that were done for the good of those children.

My grandmother always told me that some problems are insoluble and that I should concentrate my efforts on things where some good could be done.

100 posted on 12/07/2005 9:46:31 AM PST by caryatid (Jolie Blonde, 'gardez donc, quoi t'as fait ...)
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