Aug 31 2007

Weekly Digest – 08/31/07

Weekly Digest | Published 31 Aug 2007, 4:05 pm | Comments Off on Weekly Digest – 08/31/07 -

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Our weekly edition is a nationally syndicated one-hour digest of the best of our daily coverage.

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This week on Uprising:

* Katrina and Reconstruction: Two Years Later
* Black Agenda Report on Alberto Gonzalez
* Katrina and Prison Injustices
* Empire Notes on Bush’s Vietnam Anaolgy
* Katrina and Women

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Katrina and Reconstruction: Two Years Later

GUESTS: Jeffrey Buchanan, Communications Officer for the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial and Co-author of the report “Where did the Katrina money go?” Darryl Malek-Wiley, Environmental Justice Organizer with Sierra Club

On the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, organizers and residents of New Orleans are demanding rights for displaced residents. Critics of recovery efforts assail the federal policies of the past two years as a reason why many Katrina survivors have not been able to return to their homes and to their lives. In the lower ninth ward district, hit hard by the hurricane, residents and activists are still struggling to rebuild and victims are still seeking to come back. Only seven percent of the neighborhoods former residents have made their way back. Hundreds of homes, more so than in any other part of the city, were slated to be demolished in the neighborhood before New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin was forced to call for a moratorium.

For more information, visit and

Black Agenda Report on Alberto Gonzalez

GUEST: Glen Ford is a writer and radio commentator and the Executive Editor of The Black Agenda Report

This week’s commentary is on Alberto Gonzalez. Visit for more information.

Katrina and Prison Injustices

GUESTS: Rosana Cruz, co-director of Safe Streets Strong Communities and Robin Templeton, author of the article, “Locked Up in New Orleans,” which is published in the most recent edition of The Nation

A forty-three year old inmate became the fourth person to die in Louisiana’s Orleans Parish Prison in 2007. Prison officials claim the man died of an apparent suicide committed in a ten person cell though an autopsy has yet to be performed. Orleans Parish Prison, which was the 8th largest city jail in the nation Pre-Katrina, has yet to regain accreditation lost in the wake of the storm. Two years ago, hundreds of inmates were abandoned in the facility as the flood waters rose. Now, inmates continue to complain of poor conditions such as overcrowded ten person cells among other problems. High incarceration rates continue to affect the impoverished due to state laws that allow for people to be locked up if they are unable to post bail. Residents of New Orleans have organized against the crisis of the city’s criminal justice system. Safe Streets Strong Communities is an example of community members and activists coming together to address injustices in the system. The organization has pushed for independent police oversight and has sought the downsizing of Orleans Parish Prison. Rosetta James, a member of Safe Streets Strong Communities, lost her 29 year old son in Orleans Parish Prison after he died prior to his day in court. Prison officials told James that her young son’s death was due to “natural causes.”

Visit Safe Streets Strong Communities online at and read Robin Templeton’s article at

Empire Notes on Bush’s Vietnam Analogy

GUEST: Rahul Mahajan, author of Full Spectrum Dominance and The New Crusade

Empire NotesEmpire Notes are weekly commentaries filed by Rahul Mahajan, author of Full Spectrum Dominance and The New Crusade. Today commentary is on Bush’s Vietnam Analogy

Empire Notes is online at

Katrina and Women

GUESTS: Sara K Gould, President of the Ms. Foundation for Women, and Almetra Franklin, CEO of St. Mary’s Community Action Agency, Louisiana Housing Alliance

When Hurricane Katrina ravaged the gulf coast, the devastation left in its wake ignited discussions on race and even class in the United States. However, even as women were disproportionately affected by the storm, few experts connected gender to the debate. Many major Katrina related issues such as housing, redevelopment, and environmental degradation have taken their particular toll on low-income women and women of color. When speaking of the right to return and calling on the Federal Government to restore public housing, it is important to note that women-headed households accounted for 88 percent of public housing units lost in New Orleans before the storm hit. The majority of jobs lost due to Hurricane Katrina were overwhelmingly held by women and after the storm, women’s median income in New Orleans is significantly lower than that of their male counterparts. In Gulf Coast Reconstruction Watch’s new report One Year After Katrina, Shana Griffin a Nola women’s organizer and national board member of incite, states that “it is important to not only offer services to the invisible women in the gulf but also challenge the conditions that limit our access and our opportunities, such as poverty, racism, gender-based violence, imperialism, and war.” Despite the hardships faced, women activists in the Gulf Coast region have been engaged over the past two years in the task of reviving their respective communities. Multi-pronged strategic grants from the Ms. Foundation for Women have been helpful in supporting numerous community-based Gulf Coast organizations predominantly lead by low-income women and women of color. Through supported efforts women in the Hurricane affected regions have been able to recover owned incomes as well as win women important seats on planning commissions.

For more information, visit and

Uprising’s Subversive Thought for the Day:

“Until many white and well-off folk feel the full force of black pain, and open their eyes to see racial and class suffering, that divide will only wide. And the black poor will continue to be left behind long after Katrina recovery efforts are over.” — Michael Eric Dyson

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