Ripping the scabFollow New Orleanian and blogger Mark Folse has posted the best analysis of Mayor Nagin's speech and the backlash it unleashed. In an insightful and emotional post called "Talking with the King," he writes:
The unintended outcome of the speech, both in its religious rhetoric and in its signature "chocolate" moment, was to rip the scab off of the huge gash that separates New Orleans into separate, warring camps: by race, by section, by church, by income. It's not all Nagin's fault. It's all of our fault, that we measure each other by skin color or the car we drive, or where we park that car on Sunday morning or at night.
I think he's 100% correct. The outcry from all quarters is indeed telling. What hizzoner said was incredibly mild compared to the anger and apparently festering hatred that erupted in response.
In a particularly powerful paragraph, Mark reminds us how indifferent Nature is to skin color, especially when she is manifest in the form of a hurricane like Katrina.