The past 24 hours were the most difficult time yet to watch what’s going on in the areas struck by Hurricane Katrina.
First up was the emotional reporting of CNN’s Jeanne Meserve. Here’s what USAToday said.
“Mark Biello, one of our cameramen, went out in one of the (rescue) boats to help shoot. He ended up being out for hours and told horrific tales. He saw bodies. He saw other, just unfathomable things. Dogs wrapped in electrical lines … that were being electrocuted.”
Brown said Tuesday: “Jeanne conveyed a human being’s view of what she saw. Her reporting was incredibly solid. Her humanity was incredibly real. The marriage of those two elements helped viewers understand the desperate situation.”
There was an equally emotional side to Robin Roberts live shot on Good Morning America. She had gone to the Gulf not knowing the condition of her family. This was where she grew up.
Later Tuesday morning I watched an interview with a man who had lost his wife. He was on the street, a child in tow. He seemed dazed or disoriented as he told the story of being on a rooftop, holding his wife’s hand and then having her slip away.
As she drifted off, she asked him to take care of their family.
It was as sad a moment as could be seen. This man was the embodiment of human tragedy.
When the reporter asked the man where he would go, he didn’t know. His simplicity was his eloquence.
I’m hoping that sentence makes sense to you. I wish I could think of a better way to explain, other than to say, he didn’t need to speak volumes of words to have his plight understood.
I got an email from my friend whose mother had been evacuated from New Orleans home he grew up in to Baton Rouge.
New Orleans looks like a war zone. Very very sad..
Until today this had been a New Orleans story. There is plenty of damage farther east in Mississippi and Alabama. The pre-Katrina story had been set-up better in New Orleans. Now it’s all coming into perspective.
In Mississippi and Alabama the damage has been done. In New Orleans additional damage is piling on.
The breach of a levee I wrote about yesterday continued to pour Lake Ponchartrain into the city. Attempts to stop or slow the flow failed. As i understand it, flood control pumps only would pump the water back into the lake – a vicious cycle.
Civil law began to break down today. Looters were out in force. I watched people brazenly fillet a Wal*Mart. People were walking around with carts, as if they were really shopping.
CNN reported tonight there had been shootings and carjackings.
The city is preparing to move everyone out of the Superdome. It hasn’t been said, but I assume people inside are becoming volatile.
The New York Times is reporting a naval contingent on its way to New Orleans. Where have they been? Why wasn’t this done sooner? I don’t know.
Since the hurricane, the weather has been fine. On the Gulf that won’t last. Thunderstorms will fire up. There’s even the chance of more tropical trouble from the Gulf. After all, the hurricane season doesn’t peak for another few weeks.