Wednesday, June 13, 2007

"The Loved Ones"

When things go wrong, somebody has to take the fall. When what goes wrong is something as bad as the drowning of a city, then the punishment must fall on those who cannot shield themselves from blame, and it must be all out of proportion to the crime. That's not to say that Sal and Mabel Mangano are innocent exactly, just that punishing them to the maximum extent might be less about whatever negligence they may or may not have committed themselves, and more about finding somebody to target the enormous rage and grief that followed the disaster that was Katrina. Anyway, I can't describe this powerful (albeit slightly dated) article by Tom Junod in Esquire to any greater extent without diminishing it, so read it for yourself. And again, lament all those who died in New Orleans who didn't have to.

1 comment:

Nat-Wu said...

The media and political reaction to the St. Rita's incident was disgraceful to say the least. And you didn't see CNN rushing to correct some of the false claims that had been made on CNN about what happened. After reading the facts, I have a lot more sympathy for the owners. The children of those parents may want somewhere to place the blame, but while the Manganos may deserve some, as their lawyer says, why aren't they blaming all the people who could have made sure the levees didn't fail?

I'm not the lawyer so I can't really analyze the issue, but to me negligent homicide is not what this was. The politicians and Army Corps of Engineers knew that the levees could fail, but did the average New Orleaner? The answer to that is no, and to me that changes everything.