Hurricane Katrina did not decimate NO.
Levees we’d been told could withstand a Category 3 hurricane could not and failed. This failure came after Katrina passed over the city.
The Gulf Coast got chewed up and spit out by Katrina. In the false focus on NO, the aftermaths of Katrina, Rita, Isaac, etc. are invisible.
Most people evacuated in the NO area. And well.
The people who stayed were varied and not just “welfare/single mothers” and the “desperately poor.” Some stayed because they believed the levees would hold as promised.
It was a deliberate decision to close all public schools in NO. Not every school sustained irreparable damage. Plus, it was pretty easy to open charter schools in public school buildings so they could not all have been decimated or too “damaged” to return to public education use and weren’t so worthless since the idea of “landbanking” those properties had developers salivating.
The 9th Ward was not on “low” ground or the only neighborhood devastated by levee breaches and it is not only “poor black people” who lost everything. Black, white, Vietnamese, Latino/a, poor, rich, middle class, Roman Catholic and evangelical all got hit, and badly. It’s just that some neighborhoods had more wealth and therefore an easier economic time getting back on their collective feet. Middle class neighborhoods are still struggling.
Money was spent. It’s just that much of it got skimmed off before it reached those who were to get paid or helped because the levees failed when they weren’t supposed to. Insurance companies had record profits regardless of the threats that paying out on claims would bankrupt the entire industry.
8 years. And counting.
Happy fucking Katrinaversary.