“Mr. Secretary, if the nursing home owners are arrested for negligent homicide, why shouldn’t you also be arrested for negligent homicide?” McKinney asked.
As usual, the dear Congresswoman is a bit over the top. Perhaps she spent too much time at the Millions More March last weekend. Nevertheless, hurricane Katrina exposed serious problems within Federal, State and Local disaster response – and the problems led to fatalities.
My question is: if the Federal government did such a horrible job in response to Katrina, why do some want to give them greater authority to act in future disasters? I think that is a very bad idea. Certainly we should look at what went wrong and take action to correct any systemic problems. Presumably that is what Congress is doing with these hearings.
However, as Governors Bush, Napolitano, and Perry argued before the committee earlier this week, granting greater powers of Posse Comitatus to the Federal government would be a bad idea. Florida routinely deals with hurricanes with minimal Federal interference. Perhaps other States should look (if they haven’t already) at how Florida prepares for disasters and adopt what works.
Of great concern to me would be a terrorist attack in Atlanta, or one of our ports. Would Georgia be ready to handle such an event?