The s*** hits the fan

Apart from the catastrophic damage caused by the hurricane itself, a major aspect of the disaster is that the poorest residents of New Orleans, who are, frankly, the most undesirable type of population imaginable, are being spread out to states and communities around the entire country, many of which have no experience with people like this. Utah, for example, an overwhelming white, conservative state with a black population of 0.8 percent (compared to 12.3 percent nationwide), is welcoming evacuees. According to a report from Reuters, in Camp Williams south of Salt Lake City where 400 hurricane victims have been relocated, a black man asked, “How do the adults really feel about us moving in? What if I find a Caucasian girl and decide to date her? Will I have to deal with whispering behind me and eyeballing me?” Another black man, who sported dreadlocks, said, “In New Orleans, being a young black man, you get harassed a lot, stereotyped a lot.” If this black complains about being stereotyped as a black in the two-thirds black city of New Orleans, imagine what opportunities he’ll have to complain in virtually all-white Utah! Yet the Utahans welcoming the newcomers kindly assured them that all would be well.

Meanwhile, according to the Boston Herald, of the 209 evacuees brought to Camp Edwards in Massachusetts, seven qualify as sex offenders under Massachusetts law, and have to be segregated from the rest. Seven out of 209 is 3.3 percent. If this is a representative sample of the total pre-Katrina New Orleans population of 464,000, then 15,312 sex offenders are being spread around the country. If the base population is the 100,000 poorest in New Orleans, then 3,300 sex offenders are being spread around the country.

Of course, David Brooks, as noted the other day, thinks this planting of the poorest blacks in non-black, non-poor communities is a wonderful opportunity to break the cycle of poverty. Blissfully unaware that his marvelous experiment has already been tried (it’s called Section 8 housing), he assumes that the poor blacks will assimilate to the surrounding community and its middle-class standards, instead of the surrounding community and its standards being changed and damaged by the influx of the poor.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 10, 2005 08:33 AM | Send

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