Race is the single most divisive issue facing the city and is at the heart of most of its problems.
Race has become a polarizing issue
for the region and the country
as well. If we use the opportunity thrust upon us by Katrina, and make
some headway on this mega-issue we may yet build something useful on the debris left by this
storm. The country could get some value out of its $100 billion investment.
It is an overwhelmingly negative issue with few if any redeeming
qualities. Even raising the issue is distasteful. Advocacy is intense and little middle ground is allowed
("sitting on the fence can be uncomfortable"). On race you are expected
to be an extremist.
This issue is bigger than levees and the wetlands put together.
So what's up with media race reporting. They tiptoe around the subject like it didn't exist or somehow it was all a settled issue. Take the crime reports for example. They hardly ever tell you the race of the victim or the suspect. You can sometimes figure it our for yourself from the names provided or the neighborhoods involved.
Even worse read through the police provided Most Wanted Lists. You'll see a black and white picture which is usually enough to discern race. They they give you the vital information on the suspect. Height, weight, date of birth, eye color, hair color are all provided. Why not skin color?