Mama D gives Chris Shays Holy Hell for Accusing Katrina Victims of Lying
About Racism, Levee Bomb and Ethnic Cleansing
Update [2005-12-7 16:31:9 by Sherlock Google]: Video Up at
http://www.c-span.org There's Part 1 and
2. Part 1, the first panelist is not so hot, but the next 4 are powerful and
Mama D is the fifth and final panelist of Part 1.
Part 1 is the one to watch, but skip the first panelist and speeches if you
This was the most amazing hearing. If you didn't see it yesterday look for
it to repeat. The Congressmen tried to get Mama D to not go overtime and she
scolded them, saying she came up from N'awlins with a list of complaints from
fellow victims and she is going to read ALL of them.
Then she accused Chris Shays of accusing the victims of lying about police
pointing M-16s at 5 year olds, of perfectly fine housing projects that Bush
had steel-plated and closed, of a LEVEE BOMB (and she went "BA-BOOOOOM"!
right in the hearing room), of concentration camp tactics on the I-10 Causeway,
of outright Ethnic Cleansing.
Sherlock Google's diary
One chagrinned Repuke said "Could you please refrain from calling it a
Concentration Camp", to which eveacuee Leah Hodges exclaimed "No I
will not! They separated children from families, did not feed us or give us
water, they let people die, a woman lost her baby. And all the while trucks
are going past--with no supplies--just full of soldiers with M-16s. It was like
(There is no transcript up yet so I'm trying to remember)
IT WAS FANTASTIC AND CYNTHIA MCKINNEY AND WILLIAM JEFFERSON WERE THERE. THE
REPUBS TRIED TO DEFEND THE RACISM AND ETHNIC CLEANSING CHARGE BY SCOFFING AT
WASHINGTON --Black survivors of Hurricane Katrina said Tuesday that racism
contributed to the slow disaster response, at times likening themselves in
emotional congressional testimony to victims of genocide and the Holocaust.
The comparison is inappropriate, according to Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla.
"Not a single person was marched into a gas chamber and killed,"
Miller told the survivors.
"They died from abject neglect," retorted community activist Leah
Hodges. "We left body bags behind."
Angry evacuees described being trapped in temporary shelters where one New
Orleans resident said she was "one sunrise from being consumed by maggots
and flies." Another woman said military troops focused machine gun laser
targets on her granddaughter's forehead. Others said their families were called
racial epithets by police.
"No one is going to tell me it wasn't a race issue," said New Orleans
evacuee Patricia Thompson, 53, who is now living in College Station, Texas.
"Yes, it was an issue of race. Because of one thing: when the city had
pretty much been evacuated, the people that were left there mostly was black."
Not all lawmakers seemed persuaded.
"I don't want to be offensive when you've gone though such incredible
challenges," said Rep. Christopher Shays, R-Conn. But referring
to some of the victims' charges, like the gun pointed at the girl, Shays said:
"I just don't frankly believe it."
"You believe what you want," Thompson said.
The hearing was held by a special House committee, chaired by Rep. Tom Davis,
R-Va., investigating the government's preparations and response to Katrina.
It was requested by Rep. Cynthia McKinney, D-Ga., a member of the Congressional
"Racism is something we don't like to talk about, but we have to acknowledge
it," McKinney said. "And the world saw the effects of American-style
racism in the drama as it was outplayed by the Katrina survivors."
The five white and two black lawmakers who attended the hearing mostly sat
quietly during two and a half hours of testimony. But tempers flared
when evacuees were asked by Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., to not compare shelter
conditions to a concentration camp.
"I'm going to call it what it is," said Hodges. "That
is the only thing I could compare what we went through to."
Of five black evacuees who testified, only one said he believed the sluggish
response was the product of bad government planning for poor residents --
There are numerous witnesses to the explosion sound and divers have found a
30-foot crater at the bottom of the 17th St. Levee that flooded the 9th Ward,
said the panel. In addition, they said historically, towns have blown levees
upstream to prevent their own town from flooding, so blowing up levees was nothing
new for Louisiana.
Don't know if the Levee Bomb is true or not, but they all swore to God it was
the truth. All the rest of the Ethnioc Cleansing charges certainly appear to
be true to me, especially the shuttering of the housing projects that NEVER
Anyone else see it yesterday or last night on C-Span 2?
Update [2005-12-7 14:26:47 by Sherlock Google]: Otis704 found
this. Good Catch O!
When the rains broke records in April 1927, the Gulf of Mexico was full
and worked as a stopper to the Mississippi. The Mississippi was full, too,
pushing its own waters up tributaries, breaking levees and causing flooding
as far as Ohio and Texas. All that water had to go somewhere.
It couldn't go to New Orleans, panicky city fathers told the Army Corps
of Engineers; it would devastate the regional economy.
To save New Orleans, the leaders proposed a radical plan. South of
the city, the population was mostly rural and poor. The leaders appealed to
the federal government to essentially sacrifice those parishes by blowing
up an earthen levee and diverting the water to marshland. They promised restitution
to people who would lose their homes. Government officials, including Commerce
Secretary Herbert Hoover, signed off.
On April 29, the levee at Caernarvon, 13 miles south of New Orleans,
succumbed to 39 tons of dynamite. The river rushed through at 250,000 cubic
feet per second. New Orleans was saved, but the misery of the flooded parishes
had only started. The city fathers took years to make good on their promises,
and very few residents ever saw any compensation at all.
The water, which had started rising on Good Friday, would not recede until
July. Many victims would never return to their homes. Hoover, who won support
for leading relief efforts, went on to win the presidential election. And
the Corps of Engineers, who had said the levees would hold, was humbled. Says
Daniel: "People complained about the corps . . . but they never blamed
the river. They understood: 'That's the river. That's nature. That's what
it's supposed to be doing.' " -Judd Slivka
Hoover, 39 tons of Dynamite, Blow Levee and Flood Poor Parishes