Monday, December 26, 2005

NIMBY Those Victims

They just love to make me say I told you so.

'Not in my back yard' cry holding up FEMA trailers
In one of the post-Katrina era's ironic role reversals, the same local officials and residents who once screamed at FEMA to get trailers to New Orleans quickly are now fending off the 17,777 trailers that FEMA has on hand in Louisiana and says it can deliver immediately.

"My concern was strangers coming into my neighborhood that I knew nothing about," said Dianne Galatas, one of several St. Rose residents who fought plans to put a 200-trailer site in her neighborhood for New Orleans Sewerage Water Board employees. Amid the clamor, the board withdrew the plan last week, citing a lack of local infrastructure.

"It's a nice and quiet and safe neighborhood, and that's how I'd like to keep it," Galatas said. "I don't want my neighborhood ruined because theirs is."

No one disputes that the city must repopulate to recover, and common sense dictates that flood-ruined homes can't house people. Consequently, the Federal Emergency Management Agency wants to install trailers at sites throughout New Orleans, an approach the agency has used in other areas after disasters and that has been embraced, in theory, by most city officials.

But the bridge between theory and practice has been blown in some areas by opposition to the placement of trailers. Mayor Ray Nagin tried to sweep aside such opposition last week when he released his list of trailer sites. The move triggered howls of outrage from City Council members and some residents, and the administration quickly began backing off what seemed a bold proposal, a cause and effect that underscored the power of the "not in my back yard," or NIMBY, camps.

You never know your neighbors, you just don't want a whole bunch of black people moving next door. Heaven forbid, your daughter might want to marry one and you can't have that, now can you?

Courtesy of Edit Copy.

No comments:

Post a Comment