Wednesday, December 5, 2007
  From Class...
I was in New Orleans when Katrina hit... well the day before it hit. My friends and I flew in on a Friday literally buying our tickets that day...we wanted good food and a fun time...something that did NOT happen.

When we arrived, we had heard word a hurricane was coming but everyone there said they always get those warnings and not to worry. The next day, we went to an amazing restaurant, I had a horrible feeling about everything. Nothing felt right. So I ordered a strong drink and made the decision to look at flights out.

NO FLIGHTS were leaving. Okay, next, looked at trains to take us out. A train would take 4 days to get back to Dallas, and I had a test that Tuesday. All the rental car places were closed, so we took a car to the airport and stood in line with hundreds to try and find a rental car. Honestly, I stood in line with some pretty shadey people. There was a lot of arguing, and hot temperd people around us. I was scared.

I was there with my Louis Vuitton suitcase, and my VERY southern roomate (who was wearing a flowered summer dress) and we waited as my boyfriend attempted to get us out of New Orleans. We did not look like we belonged.His credit card was denied...Great. I was not old enough to use my card to get the car. So, I attempted to use my fake -id to do it. No such luck. With my boyfriends social skills he was able to call his bank, transfer funds and get (not joke..) the very LAST rental car.

Off we droke to Shreveport to escape. Traffic, police, people was a nightmare. Anyways, you are probably wondering why this pertains to media effects...but let me get there.

Hours later, we arrived at my friends grandparents house, we were safe. We were glued infront of the television as we watched Katrina creep closer and finally cause chaos.

I watched the Ritz Hotel take a bus full of WHITE people out of the hotel and leave people that were not clients behind. It was crazy. I watched the media create a vision a monsters ( the black looters) when the whites were doing the very same thing.

My father, who is NOT racist, was sick with what he saw. He started to judge the residents (blacks) of New Orleans due to the fact they were looting during the disaster. Yes, many were stealing, but MOST, were surviving. They had no other choice. Our WHITE president , did nothing for a long time.

The bias of the media effected a number of people and their thought on the people of New Orleans. The city has a lot of problems to begin with. I feel the media created a very bias side and, although there was much dishonesty going on, what we saw in class with the "black looters" verse the "white residents" made me sick. How very racist that coverage was.

Long story ...
I do not disagree at all with the fact that the media does contribute to the often-negative perception of minorities in this country. However, what I do have a problem with is the fact that there is a double standard when it comes to race in this country.
(See my blog for why...)
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This blog is a companion piece to CCJN4394:Media Effects taught by Dr. J. Richard Stevens at Southern Methodist University.

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