The French Quarter: Increasing Storm Damage
The unbelievable devastation of New Orleans is almost beyond human comprehension. The almost complete destruction of an entire city by Hurricane Katrina, the loss of huge numbers of lives, the ravaging of the property and lives of so many–especially the poor and disadvantaged–is a tragedy of monumental proportions.
One can only pity the “grand” gesture of President Bush taking a few moments from his conservative crusades to take a “fly-over” peek at it. Actually, more than pity, one can only hope that more of the American public will see him as the narcissitically evangelical zealot that he is, almost totally lacking in any genuine sense of empathy for those who are not members of his special sycophantic crowd of the extremely wealthy corporate world.
For myself, I am particularly saddened by the damage suffered in the French Quarter. Those who read an earlier posting that I made about the French Quarter (1/23/2005) will appreciate my deep affection for that small, but major, piece of American life. It holds a truly remarkable, historically important atmosphere that attracted some of our country’s major creative artists, including William Faulkner Tennessee Williams and many, many others.
It stands as a symbol of tolerance for diversity and differing life-style orientations. It has always reflected a special admixture of craziness, sober reflection, experiences of great joy and immense sadness. The French Quarter always reminded me, in a metaphoric way, of the Queen of the South. The Queen who always paraded herself in extremely elegant and regal gowns, but ones that always seemed to reveal the worn tatters that represented the sufferings of the history of the South.