'They' Destroyed New Orleans

There is an ominous truth in America that goes unspoken and ignored. It is the descendant of delusional Puritan ideology and the white supremacy inherent in the “American Ideal,” it is the fact that America is, has, and, for sometime, will be a country that has little value for human life, particularly if those lives are sheathed in Black bodies. We, as Black people, have tried to tell America about her tendency towards homicidal narcissism but our warnings have fallen upon deaf ears. They have been drowned out by the stereotype of Black inferiority or the myth of American equality or the fiction of European humanism. While Americans remain situated in their offices, in which they spend more time than their living rooms, Black people in America see the writing on the wall – they are coming. Actually, they are here. If you do not understand that capital reduces all things, including human life, to a price, you soon will. Slave.

"We could hear 'em that night," Horace said, "blowing the levees. They knew if they didn't, the water was gonna get to the French Quarter or to the white people uptown. And they didn't want that."

When it was all over, Betsy killed at least 60 people in Louisiana, a small number compared to Katrina, but when the people of the lower Ninth Ward found out their neighborhood took the brunt of the hit because a levee collapsed, the controversy started. For them the levee failing wasn't an accident. It was a sacrifice, another example of white people looking out for themselves. It was in this environment that "they" first appeared and became a part of New Orleans folklore.