A plea to bloggers – please postpone this national day of blaming: People are dying. Hundreds of thousands of people are refugees. Why can’t people see how pathetic it is to spend time now blaming each other for all aspects of preparation or response to a situation that, yes, was theorized and predicted by countless individuals?
Heck, for that matter, I guess people should be blaming me.
For my entire life I’ve heard that people are buried above ground in New Orleans because it’s under sea-level, so I guess I could have warned someone. I’ve heard those Randy Newman and Johnny Cash songs about Louisiana flooding so I guess you could blame me for not doing something to let those people know they should be prepared for it happening again.
I’ve even heard about the 1927 Mississippi River flood and can remember Hurricane Camille and civil-unrest mob-actions like the L.A. Riot, so I guess I could have warned of the possibility that all three of those types of events could be repeated simultaneously in the same place and that everyone should be prepared to respond to all three happening throughout an area of over 90,000 square miles.
But, geez, people. Can you please wait another week or so to start blaming me and everyone else?
I’ve already suggested we all wait until at least after September 11 before full-out holier-than-thou finger pointing. However, I know that’s not possible.
In the past few hours, I’ve witnessed political bloggers square off with one-another using satellite photos of hundreds of New Orleans busses parked within a few blocks of the Superdome to counter venom-filled spews directed at the White House. I’ve been removing folks from my newsreader who find following the blaming thread of this story the most compelling. I find it — at least at this point — the most repulsive.
We’re all outraged. We’re all in shock and disbelief. We all want to blame someone.
But can we at least have a national day of mourning before we commence with this national day of blaming.
Here’s my suggestion: Keep writing all your evidence-of-responsibility posts but hold onto them for a few days. Use those days to help people find loved ones and to figure out what you can do to help. Raise money for relief causes. Figure out how your church or civic club or neighborhood can re-settle an evacuee family. Then, after a week or so (September 12th at the earliest) go ahead and start back flooding the blogosphere with blame.