Katrina vs. BP: There’s Really No Comparison


Is it in poor taste to call the BP oil leak “draining”? Maybe. But it is — moreso than Katrina, I think.

True, there are a number of similarities between the two: both Katrina and the BP oil leak are man-made disasters, and both have brought out some journalists’ Calvinist disdain for our city and its economy of entertainment. But at heart, the two are very, very different.

At least with Katrina, we felt a small sense of empowerment. In the absence of leadership from City Hall, we took matters into our own hands. If something was wrong in our neighborhood, we called up some friends, and they called two friends, and so on, and so on, until Richard Angelico showed up and the problem was fixed.

But unlike the fallen trees, downed power lines, and black mold that followed the storm, the BP oil leak isn’t right here in our neighborhood. Furthermore, we’re powerless to do much about it except protest and, if we have time, volunteer for cleanup duty. Worse, the BP disaster is ongoing, with no end in sight. At least Katrina had the decency to move on after 12 hours or so.

That may explain why I haven’t talked much about it here. Other sources are doing a great job of covering the BP/Deepwater Horizon disaster and the various fucktardian responses to it, and I don’t think adding my two cents would be worth a nickel.

6 thoughts on “Katrina vs. BP: There’s Really No Comparison

  1. Richard, your two cents is worth at least a dollar.

    at least you guys can volunteer on clean-up – the rest of us feel completely helpless – much like we did during katrina. I’ve always had a belief in prayer – but as life and disasters continue, my faith is questioned. If prayer is all i have and it seems futile, what’s left?

    But i think you minimize both the immediate and the ongoing effects of katrina (perhaps, too, it’s because you experienced it first-hand, like i did 9/11). the lasting cultural effects of what happened both to nola and the rest of the country after katrina (wow, proof that our gov’t cares nothing for its poor) are just as damaging as the environmental catastrophe happening in the gulf – the effects of both will be around for a long, long time.


  2. Richard

    Yes, Ralph. It’s there in the way the writer mentions the fact that there were more people in line for CDM than at the protest. (P.S. There weren’t.) It’s rampant, this idea that we can’t be bothered to be upset because we’re too busy stuffing our faces with crawfish and jello shots.


  3. You are older than me. Heh. No seriously – what protests? I can recall one march about the murder rate, that was almost exclusively black (which I marched in) and maybe one AIDS related one?

    I LOVE New Orleans Richard – but 200 people in a city that size IS a pretty paltry protest. But I do think N.O is def more political since Katrina. That makes me proud.

    But lets be honest – New Orleans is not known for social activism – people WOULD rather party than deal with corruption, bad education and the lack of non-tourist industry. It’s one of the things that really made me want to get the fuck out of there. The real problem ISNT republicans and greedy bastards – the real problem is that the smart, alternative, educated people of New Orleans rather just watch.


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