September 2nd, 2005


A Hundred Bucks

It's not the fault of all those little kids that their parents are poor, or ignorant, or drug addicts, or "chronics" (to use the current local jargon). It's not the fault of the people who are coming to their senses and actually trying their best to get out of there that the government has blocked off the roads or locked them inside the Superdome.

My grandmother's older brother fought in the First World War. She used to say that her brother always told her that if anybody were going to donate to charity, they should donate to the Salvation Army. He said those were the people who were actually out there helping when help was needed.

Yes, I know that was ninety years ago. I know there are a lot of people and organizations trying to help down there in Mississippi and Louisiana. But I had to pick one, so my hundred bucks is on its way to the Salvation Army.

I just hope it goes to help somebody who really needs it, not some displaced over-insured upper-middle-class yuppie who lost her beachfront condo and her Beemer.

Lest you think....

Lest you think I'm feeling pangs of regret over my previous callous comments -- quite the contrary. Television news reports this evening indicate that three years ago Louisiana newspapers provided an extremely detailed account of precisely what would happen if a storm like this hit New Orleans.

Even kids in my "flunky" remedial math class who have watched the TV news are asking me, "what were those people thinking? Those little walls are only two feet thick, and they're supposed to hold back the ocean?" Gosh, maybe my remedials have a future in Civil Engineering!

Now I'm hearing that people down there have turned so barbarous that they're firing weapons on the relief convoys and medical evac choppers.

As ol' Phil Harris used to sing, "That's what I like about the South!"

I know Geraldo Rivera takes it way over the top sometimes. Okay, most of the time. From what I've seen in the past, however, Shepard Smith doesn't. He's a good reporter; he likes a good story, but he's not sensationalistic like Geraldo or some of the others. But you can tell, Smith is really on edge over this one. He doesn't have any answers, he can't get answers... and it won't surprise me if we end up seeing a lot less of him on TV after this, because he's talking straight about some pretty disturbing scenarios. So, for the sake of the little kids who don't have much choice (and who remind me of my own kids at school), I sent a few dollars to the Salvation Army.

Doesn't mean I don't still think most of the people choosing to live down there are morons. But since they're stupid enough on their own, they certainly don't need the local, state, and federal government morons making things even worse for them.

And maybe their kids'll remember this and move outta there some day.