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October 23, 2005
Another Katrina Myth Explodes

In the aftermath of the hysterical ranting of the news media during the Katrina coverage, we have found a number of memes that have collapsed when seriously examined: rampant rapes, cannibalism, and the toxic flood that kills by its very touch. Now we can add to that the virulent race- and class-baiting that claimed from almost the moment the levees broke that poor blacks got left to die while the rich strolled out of the Big Easy:

The city's two worst-hit neighborhoods, the data show, were the Lower Ninth Ward, the predominantly black, working-class community east of the French Quarter, and Gentilly, a fast-gentrifying area where homeownership rates among middle-class blacks had been rising before the storm. Each neighborhood accounted for 31 to 75 deaths, according to the mapping data, which assigned a range of deaths for each region of the city, rather than an exact figure.

More surprising were the high death figures in upscale neighborhoods once considered less vulnerable to flooding deaths because residents had the means to escape, particularly along Lake Pontchartrain in Lakeview, a predominantly white neighborhood where 21 to 30 bodies were recovered on streets where homes routinely sell for $1 million. Nearly all of Lakeview is uninhabitable, and several thousand residents, most relocated to neighboring cities or states, gathered Saturday in a church parking lot to seek answers about a recovery process expected to take years.

Without a doubt, the Ninth Ward got hit hard by the levee break, but from the previous media coverage, Americans had the impression that the poor of New Orleans comprised the only demographic of the dead. We heard nothing but how the hurricane had pulled back the sheet on the deep secret of American poverty and how the government doesn't care about its poor citizenry. Now what are we to believe -- that they don't care about the rich either? Will Shep Smith cry in the Louisiana rain about the unfairness of the high death rate among the wealthy of Lakeview, too?

I'd like to issue a challenge to the Exempt Media. Someone tell me, other than the position of Hurricane Katrina, what significant part of the story the media got right during the first two weeks of the coverage, especially regarding the effects on the city of New Orleans. I doubt we'll come up with a single point, despite their self-obsessed celebration of their reporting shortly after the catastrophe.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at October 23, 2005 9:10 AM

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» Hurricane Wilma, Will the MSM Get it Right This Time? from The Dread Pundit Bluto
Ed Morrissey at Captain's Quarters writes about the little-known fact that rich areas of New Orleans also suffered; and that affluent people were among the dead. [Read More]

Tracked on October 23, 2005 12:38 PM

» Only The Poor from Flopping Aces
Once again comes proof that the MSM are complete and utter liberal cheesedicks: (h/t Captains Quarters) The city’s two worst-hit neighborhoods, the data show, were the Lower Ninth Ward, the predominantly black, working-class community east of t... [Read More]

Tracked on October 23, 2005 1:49 PM

» George Bush doesnt care about white people from QandO
Tennessean: "Watching newscasts of the people hardest hit - mostly African-American or already poor people - waiting for government help forced many to question whether this same situation would happen if [Read More]

Tracked on October 23, 2005 8:42 PM

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Tracked on October 24, 2005 4:51 PM

» Not Just NOLA's Poor Died When Katrina Hit from OKIE on the LAM - In LA
Captain Ed focuses on the reality of Katrina's devastation across income lines, and what seems to be the complete failure of mass media to have gotten anything right! Without a doubt, the Ninth Ward got hit hard by the levee break, but from the prev... [Read More]

Tracked on October 24, 2005 5:03 PM

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Tracked on October 29, 2005 1:41 PM



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