I really dislike the media, sometimes worse than others. CNN has really disappointed me over the past 24 hours in their coverage of the hurricane striking Louisiana and Mississippi. It seems like the only thing that is important is sensationalizing the entire affair. I understand that they get greater ratings (and paydays) by maintaining viewership during crisis situations, but then you have headlines like this:
- “Man wanders New Orleans, lost, after his his wife was killed when she was torn from his grasp as their home split in half…. click here to view video”
- “And the unfortunate thing is, we don’t know how many fatalities there are.”
- “The latest storm video… The aftermath… Plus, your stories and photos. Now at CNN.com”
- “Meanwhile, in Baghdad, members of one Louisiana National Guard unit in its last week of deployment are just now learning that they don’t have homes to come back to.”
- “A wife’s desperate journey with her husband’s corpse”
- “An old man in a chaise lounge lay dead in a grassy median as hungry babies wailed around him.”
- “In some areas, gun-toting citizens took to the streets to try to restore order.”
- “New Orleans resembled a war zone more than a modern American metropolis on Tuesday”
- “The Superdome is taking on water“
The Superdome is taking on water? That makes it sound like the thing was a ship going down at sea! The truth is: a small, two-meter hole formed in the roof and drenching rain came in. The quote before that? Tastelessly used in a rapidly produced commercial with the tagline “When the weather is the news, trust CNN.”*
I mean, come on… that’s neither helpful nor informative. That said, sadly I’m sitting here watching, guess what? CNN.
For a bit of attention to the actual event, it looked like things were actually improving for the city: the hurricane turned slightly to the east right before it hit the coast, sparing New Orleans from the worst. The storm passed, and they were still in the progress of determining the damage when several of the pumps failed and the levees broke in two locations. Right now, they’re predicting it to get worse before it gets better, and one option that I just heard them discuss was using cruise ships to help evacuate the refugees.
An unfortunate thing is that my half-sister, Tami, lives in Westwego, just outside of New Orleans, and we haven’t heard from her since before the weekend. They showed some scenes from Westwego, and there wasn’t much left: just the tops of roofs sticking above the flood waters. I realize the odds are decidedly in her favor of making it through unscathed, but it would be nice if we could get in touch with her.
*Closed captioning sponsored in part by FREEDhEM™, the only one application hemoroidal cream.