we’re all sad that the president had to cut his month-long vacation short

so he could poke his head in at the devistation happening to texas’s next door neighbor, louisiana.

it must be tough to be the president when everything you do is wrong.

it must suck to freeze up every time theres a tragedy. to sit there as cameras roll and listen to children read about a goat after your dude tells you that america is under attack.

it must suck to tell everyone that the usa needs to invade a country because of its threat to this find land, and then discover that the evil nation didnt have any weapons of mass destruction and had no relationship to the terrorism that happened nearly 4 years ago.

and it must truly suck to end your monthlong wake’n’bake so you can fly to washington dc to get briefed on how to handle the misery going down back in the south.

tonight i spent most of the evening watching the news. i was a little behind in current events because last night i hung out with an old girlfriend and we enjoyed the rock music of my favorite band tsar at the house of blues in anaheim.

and since i no longer work at a television network i dont have constant access to tvs where i earn my keep, so i turned on msnbc tonight and i had tivoed some other stations and saw reporter after reporter describe how the flooding and devistation in new orleans was like nothing they had ever seen.

i saw crowds chanting how they needed help, i heard people say that they went where they were instructed and they couldnt get food or water or shelter. i watched grown men break down and cry as they described how they watched dead bodies float past their homes.

but one thing i didnt see was the president. he had apparently flown right past louisianna for some reason.

some on the tv rationalized the violence and looting and rage and misery as being due to the idea that the stranded felt ignored and abandonded. im sure if any of the flood victims had heard word that the speaker of the house had on wednesday suggested that it might be a mistake to rebuild their city, that much of it should just be bulldozed, their frustration would have increased – if indeed it was possible to be more pissed off at the administration.

as i watched i had a hard time sitting still, i kept finding myself in front of my computer, i wanted to do something, anything. i made a small donation to the red cross, i warned those on a messageboard about how FEMA was hyping Pat Robertson’s “charity” on their donations page, i called friends to find out what we could do… and i watched on my local news how some of our rescue workers were shipping machettes to new orleans to help kill the water snakes who could be deadly to those who had to travel through the flooded streets.

the whole time i wondered, doesnt the president feel like i do? doesnt he want to actually fucking do something? doesnt he want to hop on one of his airplanes or helicopters and just help a few people if he can?

does he seriously not give a fuck? do his handlers not care about even surfacy things like his approval rating being lower than nixons during watergate? how simple would it be for him to pilot one of those same choppers that he landed on that “mission accomplished” carrier several years ago and rescue desperate americans all night? not only would it improve his numbers, but for once he would actually be helping people.

yes i had heard that helicopters were being shot at. some say those were just rumors, but if i was president i would either a) shoot back, or b)suck it up and keep saving people anyway, and if i died, what a way to go down: actually helping someone. but surely the white house would know if those were just rumors or not, and certainly if it was that dangerous over there, the commander-in-chief would want to help the innocent citizens, not hide out in his big fat house. right?

isnt that why you become a public servant? to help?

how ironic that in the last post i was challenged to write something inspirational to aid my fellow african americans, when the president of the united states wasnt even helping his own people. has it really come down to that? when FEMA and the President have failed the nation, the next in the chain of command of superheroes are the bloggers?

and why would i only write something to help my brethren, why not write something to help everyone? just because im Black doesnt mean that im not interested in all people. do i really come off as being that sort of person?

whatever. well hopefully the President will be inspired by this blog post and get in his helicopter and put on his flight suit and accomplish the mission in front of him: go to new orleans and dont leave until everyone is safe.

wouldnt want to cut and run in america if youre not cutting and running elsewhere.

you can donate right now to the red cross + what bush was doing this week + blogging from the astrodome

well what an interesting day and a half

Lets review what we have learned.

We’ve learned that some people have a very difficult time discussing racial bias in journalism. We’ve learned that some people have a very difficult time realizing that the media’s influence in public perception is stronger than some believe.

And we’ve learned that some people have a hard time believing that the press can make such blatantly racist blunders, which could be symptoms to the underlying racism that still exists in American culture.

We were also reminded that the anonymous negative commentors are just as clueless and worthless and cowardly as we always remembered them as being. In fact the usually logical Abner Delecroix for some reason refused to read the entire post that he chose to comment on, and decided not to click the link that showed the AFP had indeed called Blacks looters and whites “finders”.

I spend so much time writing, do the anonymous commentors Only look at the pictures and choose which words they are going to read? Lately I have only written one or two posts a day. Do us all a favor and read them before you put your foot in your mouth.

Yes in the initial post I provided two pictures, but I linked to a third. That third one showed that AFP was capable of calling alleged looters looters, and that, unlike some have claimed, it was not an issue of two different agencies defining terms. The problem at hand was that AFP had called Blacks with goods looters and whites with goods finders.

Not only had I explained that in the body of the post supported by links, but I also answered this in the comments. But at the root of anonymous negative commentors is something twisted that makes them poor readers, poorer critics, and that might lead to their cowardice of refusing to play the game like everyone else and putting their real name/email/blog next to their bullshit.

Abner went a step further and alleged that I was a race-baiter. Because as we all know, if you see the press call whites “finders” and Blacks “looters” and you call the press out on their bullshit, and if you link to other discussions where others have concurred, then you are a race-baiter.

Bloggers and wanna-be bloggers out there learn from this lesson: no matter what you do to prove a theory or write a post there will be snipers that will come at you from the weeds. They will attack you when you are making a clear and valid point. Instead of aiming at the issue at hand they will name-call and try to distract the audience away from the point. Ignore those critics, especially when they don’t have the nads to put their real name/email/blog next to their distortions. They will try to smear and discredit you and all I can say is ignore them, theyre just slapping at your arm as youre driving the lane. Go for the hole and tick tock don’t stop.

But ultimately we learned that racism still does exist. In fact its so pervasive that it is deep inside of respected journalism and it seeps out when even they don’t see it coming. Which means its probably in more people’s hearts than we all think. Therefore think about your perceptions and your biases and if youre a journalist, just tell the damn story and keep your opinoins to the Op-Ed page.

And bloggers, definitely call out those who deserve to be called out, especially those who propigate stereotypes to millions through captions of photographs. Odds are there are far more people who will read the caption than the story, so those words are the most powerful in the grand discussion that we are all part of.

danielle + ben + blogger unknown