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Anyone who knows anything about Emergency Management knows that evacuation of residents must be a local responsibility, not a federal one. Every parish in New Orleans should have had a protocol for evacuating nursing homes, hospitals, ambulatory or bedridden residents, and those unable to leave the city themselves. The federal government cannot be responsible for this.

In other words the great loss of life in NO was the direct fault of a racist moron mayor named Ray Nagins. He and his administration had the time, the vehicles and the responsibility to get those people to safety. He gambled and the people of NO paid the price. His police officers and emergency personnel deserted, looted and disgraced their offices.

How did Nagins pay for this debacle? He was re-elected when in reality he should have been indicted. Now he will make off with most of the money being funneled in for rebuilding and New Orleans will remain a "toilet".

This is not to say that FEMA doesn't have a lot to answer for. Their response was abysmal. Too little too late. And they have been continually chastised for it. But the great loss of life was Nagins's fault, not Bush's.

I served on the Emergency Management committee in Park Ridge, New Jersey, for many years. We met each month to plan for disasters and emergencies. We knew where every person in our town who would need help getting to safe ground was located and an emergency person was assigned to be sure that person was safe. This protocol was reviewed every year by the State of New Jersey and the town was fined if it was not kept current.

Every parish in NO should have had the same plan reviewed by the state of Louisiana every year. So if you are assessing blame, you can blame Bush for late reaction after the storm, but Nagins and his administration, for the great loss of life.

Arnold Levine

Boca Raton, FL

Aug 28 2007 - 7:47pm

Web Letter

All other responsibility pales when compared to the idiocy of building the city below sea level. Wasting our money trying to rebuild it there again just compounds the stupidity!

John D. Froelich

Upper Darby, PA

Aug 28 2007 - 9:55am