States Adopt FEMA YOYO Attitude

The cries after hurricane Katrina showed that people do not understand the way FEMA works. FEMA has a 72 hour You’re On Your Own (YOYO) plan. This means that for 72 hours after an incident states and their residents are on their own. This was not good enough for the folks who though FEMA and every other government agency should have been on the ground as the disater was occurring. In jurisdictions where local emergency responders would not venture out during the storm, residents expected agencies that are hundreds or thousands of miles away to be there instantly. Now it would appear that states are adopting the same philosophy.

As the hurricane season approaches state agencies in hurricane prone states are warning their residents to be prepared because they will be on their own. There has been no outrage expressed by Jesse jackson and all the other race baiters who expressed disgust at the government’s response to Katrina. There has been no outcry from the Democratic party whose politicians take every opportunity to remind us that the administration caused Katrina and the tragedy in the aftermath. I guess now that the states are deciding on the YOYO approach, it is a matter of state’s rights.

People would do well to remember that they are responsible for their own safety and well-being. State governments are responsible for the safety of their citizens but the individual is ultimately responsible for ensuring that he is safe. Responsibility for the safety of families lies within the families. The government is there to assist. The federal government is there to provide follow-on support. Those who sit around waiting for federal or state officials to take care of their every need will likely end up floating face down in murky water.

I do not ask the question “What has the government learned from Katrina?” I want to know what the people have learned.

Source: NYT



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