Wednesday, 13 September 2017 20:12

Should You Have the Right to Die?

We pride ourselves as Americans in our lifestyle choices. The right to freedom of choice, protecting our individual assertion of free will, and deciding just how we want to live our lives. And yes, we have the right to excess. You can live a gluttonous life by overindulging in many personal hazards.

 

You know smoking causes lung cancer, but making a personal decision to smoke is your right. Drinking in access leads to a number of health concerns, but that’s your choice. Obesity by overeating? Not good, but no law can legally restrain your decision to carry too much weight. You can live where your want, and do what you want with few limitations.

 

That is, up until you want to shut things down and end your life. In the vast majority of states, that’s when the government takes over. You have the right to decide how you live, but you do not have the same right to decide, at least legally, when you want to end your life. Should you have such a right?

 

Six states (Washington, Oregon, California, Colorado, Vermont and Montana) say “yes,” and they’ve passed legislation where a patient can ask a doctor for medication to end life. Under these “physician assisted suicide” or “death with dignity laws,” as they are known, there are strict requirements as to the patient’s condition that must be met before these laws can be applied.

 

In the rest of America, death is delayed with small concern for the costs in terms of pain and suffering, not to mention, as is often the case, of economic hardship to the family and the taxpayer. Families stand by watching over loved ones who are force fed through tubes, and often kept alive by a number of artificial means. Instead of death taking its natural course at its humane end stage, modern medicine seems to make death almost optional.

 

In the debate over life ending care, a notable event took place recently. In Phoenix, a husband was convicted of shooting his wife who suffered terribly with final stage multiple sclerosis, and who would have required extensive amputations because of gangrene in order to keep her alive. She had begged for months to end her life. Her 86-year-old husband finally honored her wishes and shot her to end her misery. “Your honor,” the husband addressed the judge, “I loved Ginger since she was fifteen years old and I loved her when she was 81 years old. She begged me to end her misery, and I just couldn’t watch her suffer like that.” A jury convicted him of manslaughter, but the judge, with almost unanimous family and community support, sentenced him to probation.

 

I would hope that at the end of my life, I would have the right to make my own choice. I am not afraid of facing finality. Death will come. But there will be quality of life issues that all of us will face. And there will be a quality of living that will deteriorate and be tempered by both the effort and the ability to deal with both the physical wear and tear and the emotional costs. You see, from my perspective, there is a real difference between life and living.

 

But the system fights to keep you alive regardless of the quality of life. If it takes feeding tubes, ventilators, not having any control over basic bodily functions and dealing with bedsores that will never heal because you will never leave the bed, so be it. But once this process begins, it rarely ends — until you come to an end.

 

When I was 70, I wrote that “If there is a yin and a yang, the before and the after, what has happened and what is yet to be, then maybe getting older is a special waypost for me. Hey, I could be at the top and ready for the long and relaxing ride back down.”

 

I’m still on that great ride. But one day, it’s going to come to an end. I just hope I will be able to set my own timelines, and make my own life and, yes, death choices on my own without dictates from the government. Yes, I want the freedom of choice. In both living and dying.

 

Peace and Justice

 

Jim Brown

 

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Jim Brown is a guest contributor to GCN news. His views and opinions, if expressed, do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Genesis Communication Network. His column appears each week in numerous newspapers throughout the nation and on websites worldwide. You can read all his past columns and see continuing updates at http://www.jimbrownusa.com.  You can also hear Jim’s nationally syndicated radio show, Common Sense, each Sunday morning from 9:00 am till 11:00 am Central Time on the Genesis Communication Network.

 

Published in News & Information

A study from Germany and Synchrotron Radiation Facility, published in Scientific Reports, states that nanoparticles from toxic tattoo elements leak into the body.

 

Although previous studies suggested tattoo ink compounds to migrate to lymph nodes, as researchers would find pigmented lymph nodes, this was the first study that identified ink particles in nano form that leaked and deposited in distant tissues.

 

“The lymph nodes become tinted with the color of the tattoo. It is the response of the body to clean the site of entrance of the tattoo. What we didn’t know is that they do it in a nano form, which implies that they may not have the same behavior as the particles at a micro level. And that is the problem: we don’t know how nanoparticles react,” Bernhard Hesse, study author stated.

 

Tattoo ink contains multiple compounds, such as the inorganic compound titanium dioxide, heavy metals such as lead, beryllium, chromium, cobalt, nickel and arsenic, as well as preservatives. Their safety in human tissue has been controversial.

 

 

tattoo-in-skin-cross-section2

 

The lymphatic system is an intricate drainage system that helps clear the body of debris, toxins and unwanted materials.  Lymph nodes hold the white blood cells that fight infections and act as a filter as the debris gets cleared through.  Liver and kidney’s eventually handle the detoxification needed.

 

The consequences of tattoo ink depositing elsewhere has yet to be determined. Can it lead to cancer?  Can it cause inflammation increasing heart risk?

Study author, Hiram Castillo, states, “When someone wants to get a tattoo, they are often very careful in choosing a parlor where they use sterile needles that haven’t been used previously. No one checks the chemical composition of the colors, but our study shows that maybe they should.”

 

Dr. Daliah says, "I'm not overly worried as people have had tattoos for decades, but some full back or body tattoos could be risky."

 

 

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LearnHealthSpanish.com / Medical Spanish made easy.

 

 

Daliah Wachs is a guest contributor to GCN news.  Doctor Wachs is an MD,  FAAFP and a Board Certified Family Physician.    The Dr. Daliah Show , is nationally syndicated M-F from 11:00 am - 2:00 pm and Saturday from Noon-1:00 pm (all central times) at GCN.

 

Published in News & Information

The philosophy of the schoolroom in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next.

–Abraham Lincoln

 

Criminal and foreigner Barack Hussein Obama has, in the not too distant past, added to his long train of abuses against We the People in the education of American school children.

However, it didn’t begin with Obama.  This has been going on incrementally through administration after administration. “No child left behind” is really “No child left un-indoctrinated” through George W. Bush, which is nothing short of Communism.

In an attempt to level the playing field, they teach America’s posterity to shoot for the floor rather than aim for the stars.

Then, there is also, GLOBE. GLOBE stands for Global Learning & Observation to Benefit the Environment.  Mikhail Gorbachev is the head of an organization called Green Cross International, operating right here in the United States. Gorbachev is working to create world government and he is helping implement this education scheme.  He has also joined partnership with UNESCO, which is the source of much of the anti-American education curriculum, as well as the International Baccalaureate (IB) program.  This GLOBE program is funded and implemented through the Federal Department of Education, created under Goals 2000, and now carried over in “No Child Left Behind.”

And don’t forget about International Baccalaureate, which is a global scheme conceived in Geneva, Switzerland in 1968 and now making its way into American schools.

Among the things it promotes are:

1) Earth Worship.

2) Evolution.

3) Socialized Medicine.

4) World Government.

5) Animal Rights (animals seen as brothers and sisters).

6) Redistribution of American Wealth to other nations.

7) Contraception and “Reproductive Health” (legal abortions).

8) Debt Forgiveness to third world nations.

9) Adoption of the gay rights agenda.

10) Elimination of the right to bear arms.

11) Setting aside massive amounts of private land where no human presence is allowed.

Back to criminal Obama. Obama illegally implemented an extensive overhaul of public education from kindergarten through high school, bypassing Congress, the voice of the American people, and forcing states to agree to major changes that none of his predecessors attempted.

Apparently, Obama, the self-proclaimed “Constitutional Scholar,” hasn’t taken the time to read Article 10 of the Bill of Rights. The federal government has no business whatsoever in the education of American children.

Obama sought to implement something called the Common Core Standards, which has been implemented in 46 states and D.C., drowning students with mostly “informational text” and historical documents.

Some of the non-fiction texts that will be implemented into school curriculum are “FedViews,” by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco (2009) and “Executive Order 13423: Strengthening Federal Environmental, Energy, and Transportation Management,” published by the General Services Administration.

In 2011 in the state of Arkansas, Middle School Teacher of the Year Jamie Highfill said, “I’m struggling with this, and my students are struggling. With informational text, there isn’t that human connection that you get with literature. And the kids are shutting down. They are getting bored. I’m seeing more behavior problems in my classroom than I’ve ever seen.”

The curriculum change in public schools has been a downward spiral for many years. America has been so dumbed down that 700,000 students per year graduate without the ability to read their own diplomas.

Add to students’ confusion the innumerable amount of errors in school textbooks ranging from misinformation to omission of facts or outright lies. These “errors” can be found in virtually every subject, especially in math, science and history.

Math:

In Texas, the State Board of Education found a total of 109,263 errors in math textbooks reviewed for use in 2008 alone. Yes, I said 109,263 errors. The board had to go so far as to place a possible fine of $5,000 per error found if they were not fixed by spring of the same year.

Science:

In textbooks all across America, science (the study of Creation) is well-known for being laced with the dangerous theory of evolution, which wars against Christianity, the Bible, God and His Law, which is the foundation of our Republic.

Andrew Jackson said, “The Bible is the rock upon which our republic rests.”

That is why evolution was illegal to teach in schools at the time of the 1925 Scopes Trial.

In complete contradiction to America’s foundational principles, the National Education Association agrees with humanism. Humanism is summed up in the following excerpt by John Dunphy in his article, “A Religion for a New Age”:

“The Bible is not merely another book … it has and remains an incredibly dangerous book. … I am convinced that the battle for humankind’s future must be waged and won in the public classroom by teachers who correctly perceive their role as the proselytizers of a new faith. … These teachers must embody the same dedication as the most rabid fundamentalist preachers, for they will be ministers of another sort, utilizing a classroom instead of a pulpit to convey humanist values in whatever subject they teach. … The classroom must and will become an arena of conflict between the old and the new – the rotting corpse of Christianity, together with all its adjacent evils and misery, and the new faith of humanism, resplendent in its promise of a world in which the never-realized Christian ideal of love thy neighbor will finally be achieved.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PZjZyjNAJ7A

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EjUkzc5heU

How far are they willing to go?

History:

In Virginia, a state review committee found a slew of errors in many history textbooks. A committee of five historians caught errors ranging from the incorrect year John Rolfe married Pocahontas to quotes that do not even appear in historical records. One book illustrated Virginia soldiers in the Revolutionary War wearing red coats, when in fact they wore blue. Another textbook erroneously stated many colonial Americans were illiterate. In fact, literacy rates were extremely high.

Retired Library of Virginia historian Brent Tarter wrote in his review of one textbook, “Our Virginia,” “I also found some very significant omissions, some internal inconsistencies, and some erroneous or questionable descriptions and analyses of historical events. Some are so ludicrous and difficult to explain that I cannot understand where the misinformation came from.”

Muslim Indoctrination:

In recent years, American public schools have also been indoctrinated with the Muslim religion. Studies have shown over 500 historical errors in public school textbooks, giving an Islamic slant to our youth.

As a result, our youth are subject to the following teachings:

  • Learning to become a Muslim

  • Fasting for Ramadan

  • Learning the five pillars of Islam

  • Memorizing verses from the Quran

  • Adopting a Muslim name

  • Staging a Jihad (war against non-Muslims)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bw_0oXjUUEA

They are even subjecting elementary school students to the D.A.R.E. program, which has statistically proven to educate the students as to how to commit the crime of drug abuse rather than prevent it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K_Mb1uyLzYA

What of antidepressants prescriptions? They are simply attempting to set students up for the fall by prescribing dangerous psychotropic drugs.

Leon Eisenberg (Father of ADHD), in his last interview before his death, said“ADHD is a prime example of a fictitious disease.”

There has been a dramatic rise in the sale of antidepressants in the past decade alone. According to IMS Health, sales of antidepressants in the United States surpassed $11 billion in 2010.

Antidepressants are one of the most commonly prescribed drug classes. Four out of five physicians prescribing antidepressants are not even psychiatrists, and the drugs are increasingly being given for non-psychiatric uses.

This dramatic increase in usage could possibly be in direct connection to the controversial TeenScreen survey given to children as young as 9 years old in public schools. TeenScreen has been responsible for policing the mental health of students over the past decade.

More and more public schools have brought in the manipulative survey for children, setting them up for a prescription. For example, one of the questions asked is: “Has there been a time when you felt you couldn’t do anything well or that you weren’t as good-looking or smart as other people?” Another question is: “In the last year, has there been any situation when you had less energy than usual?”

Nearly 20 percent of students who take the survey are then labeled mentally ill, which leads to a prescription. This process is being sold as suicide prevention; however, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force found “no evidence” that screening for suicide risk reduces suicide attempts.

In past generations, parents would train their children in the way they should go, using the rod of correction (Proverbs 22) to drive foolishness from the hearts of their children, while the pharmaceutical companies compete for the position contrary to that which God commanded.

In the meantime, pharmaceutical companies are raking in hundreds of millions of dollars a day while America’s students are used as political and medical guinea pigs.

Most Americans don’t even realize that Obama was attempting to deputize the medical industry to screen the mental health of every American.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xl9CqDiANHE

Herein lies the “attention deficit.”  The deficit lies within the responsibility of the parents, not the child.

To further add insult to injury with the help of the NEA, students are being made a prey to teachers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhbC6Nziurk

The homosexual agenda is being forced onto the young.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=65RGfRlSoH8

The real question to ask here is “Why are there public schools?”

Only you can answer that!

Resolve:

As I said, the federal government of the United States of America has no lawful authority over the education of the young.

The Tenth Amendment to the Constitution states, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

For as much as I know that the American people would like to blame Barack Hussein Obama for all of his illegal acts and things he implemented, and rightly so, I have to divert from this criminal to the people that are responsible for sending their children off to the cesspool of Un-American, Un-Constitutional and therefore, illegal indoctrination of indoctrination centers known as public schools.

The reason this is happening: 86 percent of the American people who call themselves Christian conservatives are the ones sending their kids into public schools to be indoctrinated in a worldview they claim they despise.

Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.”

William Bennett, Former Education Secretary under Ronald Regan said, “In America today, the longer you stay in school, the dumber you get…” 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ifnJEFRvYus

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pfxLIcLCKsw

 

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Bradlee Dean is a guest contributor to GCN news. His views and opinions, if expressed, do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Genesis Communication Network. Bradlee's radio program, The Sons of Liberty broadcasts live M - Sat only here at GCN. 

Published in News & Information
Thursday, 07 September 2017 17:01

What To Do About Rising Flood Insurance Rates?

Hurricane Harvey has caused property owners along the Gulf and East Coasts to panic over projections of outrageous property flood insurance rates that, in some cases, could lead to increases of greater than 1000 percent. Is there really a problem finding affordable flood insurance along America’s coasts? Yes, and a growing one.

 

The current national flood insurance program has been around since 1968. Actually, it was created not so much because of hurricane damage, but due to widespread flooding along the Mississippi River in the early 1960s. More and more levees were built up and down the river, which created major flooding in unprotected areas. Private insurance companies could not handle the damage claims so the federal government stepped in. The program was extended to cover hurricane damage along the Gulf Coast, and if a homeowner didn’t get flood insurance, they were unable to get their home financed.

 

A year ago, Congress reauthorized the national flood insurance program through 2017. But in the process, a number of changes were made to make the program more financially sound. The new program caused rates to skyrocket along the Gulf Coast.

 

How do we begin to solve the affordability problem? First of all, we need to recognize how vast this exposure for national disasters has become. I live in hurricane alley, and we all understand that hurricanes are a major part of the puzzle to be solved. Hurricane Sandy, which devastated coastlines of New York and New Jersey, show that this is not just a regional problem. All coastlines are at risk. Over half of all Americans live within 100 miles of the coast.

 

But hurricane protection is just one part of the problem. Torrential rains in the Midwest have unleashed a wave of damage that is wiping out thousands of homes. Without flood insurance, they are out of luck.  And what about wildfires out west? Wildfires are a rampant and growing problem that needs a national insurance response. Then there’s the massive destruction caused by tornados in Oklahoma, Alabama, Georgia, Kansas, and a host of other states.

 

Get my point? Natural disasters happen all over America, and have increased way beyond the ability for state programs to be effective and affordable. So has any plan been proposed which is encompassing, and yet affordable for homeowners that doesn’t use taxpayer dollars? Yes. Louisiana’s Insurance Department, during the time I served as Commissioner, took the lead back in 1995 by proposing a comprehensive plan that could assist property owners following disasters all across the country. The proposal called for a Natural Disaster Insurance Corporation (NDIC) that would sell disaster reinsurance for residential and commercial properties while also providing primary coverage for residential properties.

 

In making this proposal, I commented at the time that “if a major hurricane strikes New Orleans, it could put 26 feet of water in the downtown area and cause insurance losses greater than $26 billion.”  That’s right on the money as to what happened during Hurricane Katrina ten years later. I concluded by saying: “We are going to have a huge problem with catastrophic insurance losses all over America if we don’t get a national disaster program in place.”

 

I testified a few months later before a Senate panel in Washington on Senate Bill 1350.  Private insurance would take a small portion of its premiums and contribute to a state fund. The state fund would then be backed up by a national fund. The national fund could borrow to pay for any shortfall, but no federal tax dollars would be involved. Each state could buy in and have a rate set according to the risk. Hurricane prone states like Louisiana would pay more than a state like North Dakota that experiences much less in natural disaster damage.

 

The U.S. Senate adopted my proposal, but the legislation became hung up and died in the U.S. House of Representatives. That was the plan then. And the good news is that a number of states are coalescing around this same plan now following the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, and now Harvey.

 

It’s taken almost 20 years, but it looks like it could be the right time for problem solving.  It’s just not a handout for the coastal states. The whole country will benefit. And at a price that’s affordable. We certainly cannot be any worse off than we are now.



“Do you know what happens when you give a procrastinator a good idea? Nothing!” --  Donald Gardner

 

Peace and Justice

 

Jim Brown



Jim Brown is a guest contributor to GCN news. His views and opinions, if expressed, do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Genesis Communication Network. His column appears each week in numerous newspapers throughout the nation and on websites worldwide. You can read all his past columns and see continuing updates at http://www.jimbrownusa.com.  You can also hear Jim’s nationally syndicated radio show, Common Sense, each Sunday morning from 9:00 am till 11:00 am Central Time on the Genesis Communication Network.

 

Published in News & Information

“Regrettably, outside of yourself, the individuals who most embodied and represented the policies that will ‘Make America Great Again,’ have been internally countered, systematically removed, or undermined in recent months.” - Sebastian Gorka

While the establishment media is doing its best to divert America’s attention from the real issues by focusing your attention on Nazi criminal George Soros-backed paid provocateurs (John 10:10) attempting to stir up domestic insurrection, I felt it my duty to turn your attention where it needs be turned.

Take a look with me here.  

We have seen treasonous Hillary and her criminal, traitorous, political husband Bill Clinton, who have yet to come under that special prosecutor that the president promised.

Criminal and foreigner Barack Hussein Obama, now being called out for his political espionage, continues to create war within (Psalm 9:17).

Treasonous Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell are still at the side of the president, and all the well knowing what these two have done and are continuing to do.

Nancy Pelosi, Maxine Waters, Dianne Feinstein, James Comey and the list goes on.

All remain at large to upend American sovereignty to the highest bidder (Matthew 7:16).

In other words, the swamp has not being drained.  It still remains.

Many of those in the swamp are funded by George Soros.

“And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.  Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.” -2 Corinthians 11:14-15

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uQPfNs3_RO4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xaSQpEA8e8k

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IzZAR1VFZHY

To further solidify the point, this last week, The Daily Signal reported, Why Are Trump’s Justice Department Appointees Protecting the IRS?

Various media sources have reported that federal District Court Judge Reggie Walton has ordered the IRS to finally respond to various legal requests for information and documents made by the conservative tea party organizations that sued the agency.

But the question that no one is asking is why that order was even necessary, and why the Justice Department, which is now supposedly under the control and authority of the new administration, hasn’t reversed its obstinate, inflexible, and stubborn defense of the IRS.

It was over four years ago that the inspector general for tax administration at the Treasury Department released a report detailing that the IRS had targeted conservative nonprofit organizations seeking tax-exempt status, and that then-IRS employee Lois Lerner admitted what had been happening at an American Bar Association meeting in Washington.

The inspector general report found that officials were delaying the processing of applications and requesting voluminous, unnecessary, and irrelevant information, due to the perceived opposition of the nonprofits to liberal policies being promulgated by President Barack Obama and their association with the tea party movement.

The Justice Department’s lawyer, Laura Conner, told Walton that the IRS should not be forced to “respond to far-reaching inquiries.” But Walton asked, “Why hide the ball? If there’s nothing there, there’s nothing there.”

Then, we have the Sons of Liberty Media reporting this week “Sebastian Gorka and Another Broken Trump Promise.”

President Donald Trump promised a change on Islamic terror, but all the change agents are gone.

The specific problem was Trump’s apparent retreat from his repeated insistence on speaking about “radical Islamic terrorism” rather than a faceless, amorphous and ideology-free terrorist threat. Gorka continued:

In his resignation letter, Gorka said:

[G]iven recent events, it is clear to me that forces that do not support the MAGA promise are — for now — ascendant within the White House. As a result, the best and most effective way I can support you, Mr. President, is from outside the People’s House.

Regrettably, outside of yourself, the individuals who most embodied and represented the policies that will “Make America Great Again,” have been internally countered, systematically removed, or undermined in recent months.

This was made patently obvious as I read the text of your speech on Afghanistan this week.

The fact that those who drafted and approved the speech removed any mention of Radical Islam or radical Islamic terrorism proves that a crucial element of your presidential campaign has been lost.

Gorka himself has been known to equivocate on this issue, but he was one of the last, if not the last, member of the Trump administration who was upholding any part of Trump’s campaign promises: to speak honestly about the motivating ideology of the jihad threat; and to reverse the Obama administration’s policy of denial and willful ignorance regarding the motivating ideology behind the global jihad threat.

In 2011, the Obama administration initiated a massive purge of counterterror materials that spoke honestly about the ideological roots of the jihad threat.

The Obama administration instead mandated that the FBI and other law enforcement agencies not study Islam.

This was a direct result of Muslim groups — many of which had links to Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood — demanding the removal of such material.

Those who are committed to protecting us were directed at the highest levels to downplay and deny that Islamic terrorism had anything to do with Islam.

Since this is false, that directive has deformed our counterterror response ever since.

But Donald Trump campaigned on the implied promise to change all that.

Say what you will Americans, namely those who blindly follow behind their favorite jersey (politicians) regardless if they do what they promised to do or not, you are the problem when it comes to addressing the truth of the matter and holding those responsible by righting the wrongs when it comes to upholding their oaths.

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not the victims… But accomplices.” – George Orwell (Luke 22:48)

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Bradlee Dean is a guest contributor to GCN news. His views and opinions, if expressed, do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Genesis Communication Network. Bradlee's radio program, The Sons of Liberty broadcasts live M - Sat only here at GCN. 

 

 

Published in News & Information
Thursday, 31 August 2017 17:01

Here Comes the Cajun Navy

 

The Cajun Navy wasted no time. Hurricane Harvey slammed into the Texas Coast on a Friday. By Sunday, hundreds of boats were on their way to Texas. I passed a supermarket parking lot two days after the storm hit, and a large contingent of boats and trailers were lined up to head for the Lone Star State. As this column is being written, thousands of Louisianans are offering help. That’s what many Texans did for us here in the Bayou State exactly twelve years ago.

 

Those of us living on the Gulf Coast remember the fear and concern that enveloped our world as a lady named Katrina changed many of our lives forever. In looking back, many Louisianans felt that maybe New Orleans really was a city that care forgot, and the whole Gulf Coast was thrown in for good measure. This human tragedy has haunted the Bayou State ever since.

 

Two days before Katrina attacked, I was hosting a local radio program in Baton Rouge and was interviewing a key official with the National Hurricane Center in Miami. “Katrina has turned in a much more northerly direction, with a beeline for New Orleans. We are saying a possible Hurricane 4, and you folks are going to have some big problems up there.”

 

I was stunned. “What? We’ve had no warning of this. You’re telling me it’s going to come right towards New Orleans?”

 

The next morning, with Katrina only a day away, I called my sister, living at the southern tip of Louisiana in Port Sulfur.  I offered to come get her family, but she told me the single road north was completely congested and it was best for her to leave her home and evacuate immediately. New Orleans has only four roads that lead out of the city, and they too were ensnarled in massive traffic jams as the locals fled for safety.

 

But as thousands who had transportation escaped, there was virtually no evacuation plan in place and no mandatory exodus.  When asked repeatedly by the press, the Mayor of New Orleans issued a statement saying: “He’s having his legal staff look into whether he can order a mandatory evacuation of the city.” The storm was now only hours away, yet no public effort was undertaken at either the city or state level to supply public transportation for the thousands who had no way out.

 

Miraculously, the storm passed on a Sunday night, and did little damage to the Crescent City. By the next morning our New Orleans family and guests were packing up to head back home.  Then the chilling news came in a phone call from a friend who had ridden out the storm. The levees had broken and the city was flooding.

 

The real tragedies took place in the days that followed. Thousands were stranded on rooftops and in attics.  When private boat owners headed into New Orleans and surrounding areas to help, they were often told by state and federal law enforcement officers that it was illegal to bring their personal boats into the disaster area.  I was told that very thing when I tried to make it by boat to my in-laws house on Bayou St. John. Hundreds of boat owners, labeled the Cajun Navy, ignored the ludicrous orders and charged in to save thousands of stranded homeowners.

 

For a week the Governor and the President squabbled over who had the authority to oversee the Louisiana National Guard. It was a ridiculous turf battle that delayed the rescue efforts by several more days.  It took an Army General from New Roads, Louisiana (Russell Honore’) to take charge and bring some order to the devastated area. If it were not for hundreds of Cajuns and Rednecks alike, who took it upon themselves to lend a rescuing hand, many more lives would have been lost.

 

As Texas will learn in the months to come, it is dangerous to allow major developments that are drained by bayous and streams through metropolitan areas. Levees can only be built so high, and water pumps can only be built so big. Other storms will come.

 

Louisiana was drastically unprepared for the coming of Katrina. Over 1000 lives were lost. It’s early to second guess, but Houston and the surrounding areas could have done more in anticipation of such a storm. But when a full review of all the damage is done in the months to come, one thing will stand out. Thank goodness for the Cajun Navy.

 

Peace and Justice

 

Jim Brown

 

 

Jim Brown is a guest contributor to GCN news. His views and opinions, if expressed, do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Genesis Communication Network. His column appears each week in numerous newspapers throughout the nation and on websites worldwide. You can read all his past columns and see continuing updates at http://www.jimbrownusa.com.  You can also hear Jim’s nationally syndicated radio show, Common Sense, each Sunday morning from 9:00 am till 11:00 am Central Time on the Genesis Communication Network.

 

 

Published in News & Information
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