Tasty Bread, Good Circus

Sep 28, 2006 by

While the Saints game is undeniably bread and circuses, garnering attentiion and participation in far greater quantity that things like housing or elections, it still has its good sides. For the first time (yes, first time, I am NOT a sports fan of any stripe) I watched the Saints pound Atlanta into the ground the other night. Besides the awe of the impossible I also felt that the game might help bring us back into the national consciousness. From the looks of things it has. Here is part of an excellent article from (Ta-Daa!) Sportsline:

New Orleans, ravaged by Katrina, far from recovered – CBS SportsLine.com
You hear how New Orleans is coming back, that the recovery is progressing, then you come here, to the mostly black neighborhoods, and you see it is a lie, and our shame.

There are few houses left totally intact within eyesight. Debris still lines some of the streets. There are people moving about but not many. There is a deserted feel. Football might be coming back to New Orleans on Monday night, but the money from the federal government seems to have not quite made it, so many of the homes stay annihilated, and people remain lost in the bureaucracy.

When part of an American city — in these times of the mega-rich, where wealth spills onto the streets by the c-note — looks like the surface of the moon all this time after Katrina, something is wrong. You want to say the Ninth Ward looks like bombed out Iraq, but Iraq is being rebuilt with more rapidity. Saying the Ninth Ward looks like Iraq is an insult to Iraq.

In fact a columnist for a weekly newspaper here asked the question: “… are you safer in the streets of New Orleans or Iraq?”

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