Not sure why, but watching coverage of New Orleans post-Katrina made me think of the Trail of Tears.
No, I don’t see the two events in history to be parallels, but the Tears part seems appropriate. If trucks, barges or planes don’t appear soon – I fear we’ll have thousands walking their way out of the bayou.
My brother got tagged by Katrina in Miami. My Dad felt some of the effects in Gulf Shores. My Uncle Bill has been tagged by it in Covington, LA and my cousin – thankfully – left New Orleans for Houston. They are all OK. We even felt the storm in the form of tornado activity in Auburn. We’re safe, too. I wish the same could be said for thousands of others.
Give to the Red Cross online or call 1-800-HELP NOW (1-800-435-7669).
More thoughts …
If pageload time is any indication, their server is being hammered by good natured donors. That’s good. One idea – put the real phone number on there, too. Not just “HELP NOW” and no number. People have cell phones these days. The numbers on the keys are tiny – the letters, even smaller.
Thousands of refugees … read that carefully, refugees in America … are being told to “Get Out!” of The Big Easy, but too little infrastructure exists to make the chore possible – right away. This isn’t a slam on anyone. The government and those that either chose to stay – or couldn’t get out – are all in a horrible situation.
I’ve tried to think of all the ways public relations activities can help the situation, but fact is – this is an event that can only be handled by face-to-face interaction. All modern and traditional forms of mass communication have literally been washed away. No phones, little radio (and no place to get batteries), no TV, no cell coverage, … it goes on …
The victims and the public safety officials are all overwhelmed. I don’t have any answers to offer here, except – Give to the Red Cross online or call 1-800-HELP NOW (1-800-435-7669).
One thing is for sure. Blogs aren’t the PR answer for this one. Sure, they can spread the meme of fund-raising efforts and the rest. But, they don’t offer any crisis information to victims in the affected areas.
I do trust that sanity will prevail and the looting will end. Words like Beirut, Hiroshima and Tsunami have all been used by various political leaders. Sadly, all of them do conjure up ‘some’ similar images. Devastation. Total destruction. Sadness that could have been – at least in some instances – avoided.
More questions than answers exist for these victims of nature. The US Government will respond. I do not doubt that at all. It took a few days to get started, but the level of activity is about to be awe-inspiring in saving these souls. That’s my prediction.
Now, give to the Red Cross. They are the best bet to provide help.
Red Cross Donations or call 1-800-HELP NOW (1-800-435-7669).