The death toll from this week's tornadoes has topped 340 — and 28 of them came from one small Alabama town. Very little of Rainsville, population 5,000, remains. And yet, survivors continue the difficult task of picking up the pieces. One family, the Hamiltons, struggles to figure out what to do next.It was heart-wrenching hearing about how they lost everything. The lady said they needed a trailer or RV sent down to live in while they rebuilt, because they couldn't stay with friends forever. That reminded me of this email, which my boss received from one of our wingnuttier clients a few years ago. It claims North Dakota had a major blizzard and the people there didn't need government money or assistance like the folks from New Orleans. According to Snopes.com, this email has circulated around a number of times, with Muskegon, Michigan, Cedar Rapids, Iowa and Colorado as the supposed site of the disaster. Of course they are places with primarily white populations, unlike New Orleans. Also, in all the cases except for Cedar Rapids, the people's homes weren't destroyed. Also, Snopes (that damn liberal site, the same client sent us an email saying Snopes was liberal, and couldn't be trusted because they used FACTS) pointed out that the National Guard was called out to deal with the blizzard in North Dakota. I am curious if the same racists who circulated this email will reconsider, now that a large number of white folks are now homeless and in need of help. I doubt it.
Of course, a tornado is much different than a major flood/hurricane, as private homeowner's insurance covers tornados, but government-subsidized insurance covers floods. Regardless, white bigot conservatives will most likely continue to insinuate that white people don't need government help, but useless, lazy blacks are the only people who benefit from government spending. I do not agree with any of those descriptions above, I am just trying to summarize what I hear when conservatives talk about government.