We should never forget what took place 8 years ago in the city of New Orleans. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina the levees broke and massive flooding engulfed the city. What took place in the aftermath was something that should never be erased from our collective memories.
What we’re talking about is the mass displacement of tens of thousands of people who still have not been able to return to New Orleans. Many saw the lack of response and oversights as deliberate with an end goal of removing a population of people deemed undesirable.
In the aftermath of Katrina we saw vigilantes running around shooting and killing Black folks. Some of it was deep hatred they already held. A lot of it was from exaggerated reports of violence, looting and mayhem in the Superdome where many sought refuge.
We now know that former New Orleans police chief Eddie Compass was the person behind the heightened reports. He did so to get more help, but it resulted in anger and resentment and later physical harm being directed at Black people trying to escape the flood waters. This includes unprovoked attacks in the Algiers section of New Orleans as well as on the Gretna Bridge and the later the Danziger Bridge.
In the aftermath of Katrina we saw a rash of police shootings amounting to over 10 deaths. This led to federal investigations with a number of officers eventually convicted.. Below is a small sampling of audio highlighting what went down in New Orleans.
First we have the Kanye West vs George Bush audio mix which captures the mood of the day and lays out the challenges people were facing.. It features everyone from Juvenile to Master P to former Mayor Ray Nagin to Geraldo Rivera. speaking to what was blowing up all around them. It also features Kanye West and his famous outburst to then President George Bush. Years later Bush would say it was the low point of his presidency and Kanye sadly apologized.
We also included heart wrenching testimony from the Hurricane Katrina Tribunals which took place the following year..Here you hear former Black Panther Malik Raheim and others talk about the terror of white vigilantes hunting Black people to keep them out of their neighborhoods as they sought dry ground. What took place in New Orleans was a type of neighborhood watch where everyone Black is suspicious and should be shot before questioned. This may have been the model followed by George Zimmerman years later.
Part One of testimony given on behalf of Katrina victims by an eyewitness who worked to save lives in New Orleans, former Black Panther Malik Raheim. Includes a mix of music by Kanye West, Gil Scott-Heron, and reporting from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
Part Two of Malik Raheim‘s searing testimony about the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, white vigilantes, and the lack of emergency response to the victims.
We continue with testimony from the Hurricane Katrina Tribunals, and updates on local events.