"We have come through what may have been one of the worst weeks in America's history, a week in which government at every level failed the people it was created to serve.
There is no purpose for government except to improve the lives of its citizens. Yet as scenes of horror that seemed to be coming from some Third World country flashed before us, official Washington was like a dog watching television. It saw the lights and images, but did not seem to comprehend their meaning or see any link to reality.
As the floodwaters rose, local officials in New Orleans ordered the city evacuated. They might as well have told their citizens to fly to the moon. How do you evacuate when you don't have a car? No hint of intelligent design in any of this. This was just survival of the richest."
--Bob Sheiffer, FACE THE NATION
Yes Amadou this my country
And these my people
Evacuated as if criminal
Rescued by neighbors
Shot by soldiers
Adamant they belong
The rest of the world can now see
What I have seen
Do not look away
The rest of the world lives here too
--from Suheir Hammad's "On refuge and language"
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