Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Katrina Tears & My Vote for Mayor

I cried daily when I was a baby due to colic. I didn't cry much growing up, and I probably didn't cry even once from the age of 18 on, at least until this whole Katrina thing ruined my tearless streak. I cried hard on the morning of September 2nd 2005 as I lay in my bed in flooded New Orleans and listened to Garland Robinette interview Mayor Nagin. It had been five days and no help had come to the city. The day before I swam to Xavier and witnessed several dead bodies, and thousands of people in need of help. It was incredibly frustrating. During the radio interview, both Robinette and Nagin cried to the point that they were speechless. It was very emotional for me, and out poured my tears. Since then I cry quite a bit. Usually I don't cry alone. For example, when Springsteen sang "When the Saints Go Marching In" at Jazzfest, everyone around me was blubbering too. But sometimes I cry for the strangest reasons. I got a few tears in my eyes last night as I was watching the Mayoral debate. It's come down to Nagin vs. Landrieu. In the end I think I am going to vote for Landrieu, but it is hard for me. I think Nagin is a good person, and his heart is in the right place. He wasn't corrupt, and I grew a bond with him as people attacked him for his tirade against the lack of response from the federal and state governments. I also don't hold anything against him for the infamous Chocolate City rant. People who aren't here can't begin to understand how difficult life is, and the stress can add up and manifest itself in strange ways. But I think a change in municipal leadership would send a message to congress that we need help and we are through with business as usual. For me it's as if Nagin is the Suffering Servant in Isaiah 53. So I'm sorry that I'm not voting for him. The race is predicted to be very close. I think either candidate would do a pretty good job, but I'm going to have to vote for Landrieu.


  1. Anonymous3:32 PM

    In Chris Rose's interview, Nagin says he hasn't cried since the storm, while Landrieu says he cried "last night."

  2. Anonymous9:25 PM

    we were all crying with you... are you not voting for nagin because you associate him with such devastating fear and sorrow? i only ask because you seem to identify personally with nagin, but you didn't mention anything about landrieu.

  3. I'm not voting for Landrieu because of an association of Nagin with the hurricane. I guess it sort of has to do with perception. The rest of the country, for better or worse, thinks Nagin is a bit loopy. I even saw the Nagin dressed as Willy Wonka tee-shirts in Nebraska of all places. We need some serious federal help, and maybe, just maybe, Landrieu could present our case better as he doesn't have the negative baggage.

  4. Anonymous12:47 PM

    that was a really sad blog. it just reminded me how i know so many people that worked at hotels which gave them refuge from the storm just to tell them to leave a few days later. i know one person that left the hotel and walked all the way to algiers. they said that the stinch of the city will be one thing that they will never forget. they also told of the dead bodies that lined the mississippi bridge. our city has been thru so much.
    i too remember crying. my family was in northern louisiana. everyday some one cracked. my day to succumb to the pain came in atlanta two weeks after the storm. this was during the time when all students were scrambling to get into any university that would take them. i just had a hard year at xavier but had redeemed myself that summer. i didnt think it was fair to ask me to pick up the pieces once again. honestly, i believed that i lacked the desire and strength to do it again. this made me cry to the point where it hurt to open my eyes.
    however, one thing that i learned during that whole ordeal is that we have a strength in Jesus. i dont believe that God let this happen due to the sins of the city (if this were the case the whole world would have long been destroyed) but i do believe that we like in a physical world and unfortunately, events like this are bound to happen. however, i do believe that God gives us the strength to get through it and make good out of bad. the events were horrible, but i know countless persons who have made the best of the situation and are doing better. i think this event should teach us to trust God and he will handle everything elses.
    in a three months, it will be one year to the devestating events of last year. however, we must not forget the feelings that you, and i , and the entire city felt. the world should never forget that hurricane they called katrian.

  5. Anonymous12:53 PM

    professor houman,

    the last comment that you received was from me, ashley smith in your tth class that meets at 115. the for some reason the blog is saying that my password is incorrect