Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Speaking of Katrina...

I am going to get torched for being a mean ole meanie, but I can’t pass this up. Just as the press gets revved up for Named Storm #1, the Post pops out with this piece. I wonder how long they’ve been saving it.

For Many of Katrina's Young Victims, The Scars Are More Than Skin Deep

There is some really sad information in here, though I think I’ll take issue with some of the stats.

A report prepared for Congress last November estimated that 189,000 children were dislocated by Katrina; about 110,000 still do not live where they did nine months ago.

A Louisiana State University mental health screening of nearly 5,000 children in schools and temporary housing in the state found that…14 percent had relatives or friends who died…

Assuming that about 2000 people died in the storm, and as we have been informed that a minimum of 189,000 children were affected by the storm, we can assume that for every death caused by Katrina, 13 children are claiming to have known each of them. Or perhaps the sample is concentrated with those experiencing the worst of the storm, as they are still in temporary housing, and the Post thought it would be neat to stack those two unrelated statistics to maximize the effect.

Now, everything said in this story is probably true. But what is the interest in Washington DC?

Some advocates, including the Children's Health Fund, have called on the federal government to allocate $100 million to send a force of pediatricians, family doctors, specially trained mental health workers and mobile medical vans to the Gulf Coast. The Children's Defense Fund, another advocacy group, likewise is calling for emergency health and mental health services.

And there we get to the meat of it. Money for children. Who could possibly be against that? Perhaps we should give them the Homeland Security cash that DC just had taken away. We could have a contest. The town with the most inept politicians gets the funds. Now that I would like to see.