Covering Katrina

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Covering Katrina
“Let people know the facts and the country will be safe” - Abraham Lincoln. Hurricane Katrina was one of the worst natural and subsequently man-made disasters of the year 2005 Katrina and its aftermath has gone down in history as one of the governments worst response to a domestic emergency. As a way of giving understanding to the search and rescue aspect of Katrina, The Times- Picayune printed a guide to the spray painted markings on people’s homes. Each aspect of the X marking had a meaning. The top numbers represents the date that that home was searched, the left is for who searched it, the right is a warning or potential gas leaks or drowned wires, and the bottom represents the body count. This has to be the most gruesome part of the guide itself. It was a reminder that lives were lost due to the storm, human error, and plain neglect. The rescue markings are a haunting reminder of the wrath of Katrina. Journalist Chris Rose said at a elegy, “Who grieved over 1 dead in attic and who buried 1 dead in attic?” at a elegy. This sort of coverage changes the averages Americans mindset from one of apathy to one of empathy. It make you not think of the lost as nameless and faceless people, but instead of as some ones sister, brother or friend. One part of the exhibit that stuck out to me the most was the plywood from the Oriental Rugs store in New Orleans. The wooden board read “you know what it means to miss New Orleans y’all come back 4 carnival. I have my parade spot…” on one side, and the other warns looters that they will get shot. Looting was a big problem during the aftermath, but how the media portrayed it was one-sided, and downright racist. Another aspect that interested me was the use of the word refugee. The media brought up the question of ‘How can someone be a refugee in their own country’? Hurricane Katrina hit all of the Gulf…...

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