Friday, September 2


Well, this president, who gets blamed for anything and everything, including (if you can believe) having set the environmental stage for the formation of Hurricane Katrina, isn't playing the "cover your butt" game. He's a stand-up guy and I believe him when he says, "we'll get on top of this situation." I also agree with him and his critics that more could have been done sooner by the federal government; but, that post mortem will come in time and the political fall-out should leave both political parties scathed and appropriately so. Local, state, and federal governments appeared catatonic and inert, and embarrassingly overwhelmed this week.

This president has had the largest attack ever perpetrated on American soil and what will likely prove to be the most catastrophic natural disaster in our nation's history on his watch. He rose to the occasion in the wake of "9/11"; he'll demonstrate executive leadership in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. That you can count on, as he's been tested and tested again, during his five years in office, and he has always exhibited steely resolve.

Fact is, this apocalyptic nightmare that struck New Orleans had been foreseen in countless scenarios for years and years now. I remember (and told my wife about it before Katrina struck) reading a "National Geographic" article a long time back that went into detail about New Orlean's vulnerability to flooding, how the natural flow of the Mississippi River to the Gulf of Mexico had been redirected by the Army Corps of Engineers over the years, of the earthen levee system, how Lake Pontchartrain was tantamount to a Sword of Damocles hanging over the city in the event of a major hurricane, and so forth and so on. Indeed, the Crescent City was an acknowledged disaster just waiting to happen; and now it has happened. Gross indifference to the inevitable has come home to roost now in government offices from New Orleans, to Baton Rouge, to Washington D.C.

But as I have watched this sad, sad cataclysm unfold before my eyes on television this week, and observed the thousands of hapless American citizens herded like cattle into the New Orleans Superdome and left there to rot for nearly four days in horrific, unimaginable, inhuman conditions, I have thought, in turn, about the 10,000 or so illegal aliens a day crossing at will into the United States from Mexico, taking sanctuary in America's numerous "Sanctuary Cities," and, in time, finding a vast, accomodating "safety net" of medical, educational, and social services available to them, a plethora of open borders' and Latino activist groups to do their bidding, while at the same time having the discretionary income to send billions and billions of dollars back home to Mexico or to their other Central and South America homelands.

There are reportedly 350,000 to 400,000 illegal aliens residing in Houston right now -- the nation's 4th largest city -- and with more on the way; and Houston, earning plaudits from President Bush this week, has already taken in approximately 25,000 Katrina victims from Louisiana, placing most in the Astrodome, and the overflow in Reliant Arena. Think about that juxtaposition! Please, think about that! I'm here to tell you the illegals are getting a far better shake than America's own dispossessed. And that's not right.

So, let's not be deluded -- not a one of us -- that a Department of Homeland Security will avert crises in this country or respond in a timely, comprehensive fashion should they occur, natural or otherwise. DHS obviously isn't there yet (isn't even close) and remains more misnomer than resource and protector, despite what we're being told from Washington. This growing federal bureaucracy hasn't been able to secure our borders and by all indications hasn't wanted to or been instructed to.

Right now, today, you're better off being a Mexican border jumper in the United States than a Louisiana flood victim. Is that disgraceful or what?