Angry New Yorker

Thursday, September 01, 2005
We pray for you after Hurricane Katrina

Now, two days later, its clear the near miss wasn't. Rather, the glancing blow spread the devastation far, far beyond New Orleans. Our hearts break and we're trying to learn all the lessons we can for future reference.

One troubling development is the apparently rampant looting and criminality ongoing in New Orleans. We hoped it was merely driven by urgent need for food, water and medicines, but it rapidly became clear utter lawlessness and larceny was the order of the day in areas. So, we found the LA Governor and CNN's misguided claim that the "police need to focus on rescuing people now not property loss" coming home to roost. Sorry, folks, but without order your rescues are going nowhere.

And so now the Mayor of NO has, as we expected, ordered all the police off rescue and to restoring order. Didn't we learn with the looting in Iraq after the fall, or did we hope/expect that Americans under stress would be different? So, regretfully, though politically unpalatable in our age of umbrage, the order should have gone out to shoot looters on sight. After the first rounds of looters gunned down order would have returned virtually instantly. Instead now we have reports of looters trying to break into Children's hospitals. Yet, I have heard absolutely no mention of shooting looters. Why are we so afraid to put order at the top of the list?

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