Letter to the Editor

By Letters from Readers

Hurricane Katrina

For the past month, the American public has been inundated with images of the hurricane. The dramatic flair with which the television anchors carry the viewer through this disaster has left me with a dirty feeling that, behind all this show of solidarity, lies an agenda that seeks to exploit the victims of this horrible tragedy. The media seems to be focusing on those aspects of the disaster that concern quick and ratings-driven drama. The aftermath of the hurricane, as presented to us, was not of a process of rebuilding lives, but a process of cultural and political division, which arose from both sides of the political spectrum.

As soon as the hurricane hit, Democrats, smelling blood and in an attempt to destroy what little authority and respectability the President had, began to blame him for everything, even the wreckage the hurricane caused. Similar, and equally irrational behavior, reverberated from the Republican camp. As anybody who has ever watched Fox News knows, Bush is purportedly a President who has marvelously demonstrated his ability to lead in times of peril. He led us through the September 11 attacks and the Iraq war, which he, in fact, started. The Republican camp seems to be able to turn any political problem into just another justification for Bush’s bravery and strength. Hurricane Katrina is sometimes referred to as something that has happened to Bush, in an attempt to elicit pity. However, the very job description as the leader of the free world is to make tough decisions and take responsibility for them.

Nothing about this is surprising. Politics is a game of exploitation and gain. In a democracy that is fed by scandal and politics, it is expected that politicians, celebrities, and others do everything they can to take advantage of a tragic situation. What is really galling is that everybody seems to have forgotten that thousands of people are still homeless. Children are without parents, perhaps forever. When politicians bicker among themselves, we shake our heads in dismay. But what happens when they start holding our fellow citizens hostage in the process?

Dmitri Leybman

First-year in the College