Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Does anybody miss New Orleans?

On NPR this morning, in a discussion about the Roman empire, the interviewer told his guest that a reporter recently returned from New Orleans called it "America's Pompeii." I had come across this post earlier in the week. This seemed like a sign that it was time to bring the subject up again.

This is how we were just over a year ago.

Pope Benedict XVI's envoy to the United States to bring aid for Hurricane Katrina's victims said Saturday that many of them have been struck by "shameful" poverty in "rich America."
"The weakness experienced by the United States faced with this catastrophe" serves to "destroy all of our beliefs about self-sufficiency," the Vatican official said. "Thus, for me, in the bad part of this event there is also the hope, for many citizens, of seeing that the world is greater than the United States," Cordes said.
In that same post, I notede that the President had pledged to provide "whatever it costs" to rebuild the Gulf Coast.

Sadly, beliefs in self-sufficiency are not broken by one catastrophe, and presidential resolve is reserved for foreign ventures that are still in the news. "You can't be president of the United States and conduct yourself if you're going to cut and run," only applies to foreign policy.

May you enjoy your Thanksgiving Day. Say a prayer for the people of New Orleans. Say a prayer for our country. Pray that New Orleans is not our Pompeii, but our road to Damascus. We need the latter. Like Rome, we may not survive the former.

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