Thursday, January 18, 2007

The Best Story That Should Not Have Been Told

I heard former NFL QB, Bobby Herbert say, that by rooting for the Saints, it was an act of patriotism. A true American should cheer for the Saints because of all the suffering, redemption and perseverance that these citizens have demonstrated.

Here's my issue. The amount of damage to the city of New Orleans could have been prevented. Hurricane Katrina was a powerful force, yet scientists were predicting a strike like this for years. As late as four years ago, I remember a report on NPR discussing the great risk that New Orleans was exposed to if a hurricane ever struck. The army corp of engineers recommended strengthening the levees. Scientist warned that by developing surrounding marsh lands that you will eliminate/reduce a natural buffer against the storm. Needless to say, these precautions were never acted upon. Because it was a level four storm, damage would likely occur, but the amount could have been reduced.

This thinking, and consequent acts of "patriotism" demonstrated by rooting for the Saints, is equivalent to a high school student abusing LSD for years and frying his brain, and then having his parents celebrate that he barely passed his courses and graduated high school. Feel happy for the kid, but be upset by his parents for allowing him to be in that perilous condition.

I do not care if you root for the Bears or the Saints this Sunday, but, if you root for the Saints, please be for the reasons such as:
  • The entire organization has done a great job in rebuilding this team from a 3-13 to a Super Bowl contender
  • Drew Brees' comeback and all-pro performance
  • Reggie Bush and Duece McCallister are the new dynamic duo
  • Or even, I love their uniforms; I think Mike McKenzie is hot; or I like when the old, white man does his dance on the sidelines

The Saints are a positive for the city, bringing entertainment and a distraction for those who survived the hurricane, but the Saints cannot rebuild it. This "Cinderella/American Comeback" story should never have been written. Let that be a lesson for New Orleans' parental guardians, Mayor Ray Nagin and Kathleen Blanco.

Bear Down.

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