Alan Cross, a reader of this blog and sometime commenter, is here in south Louisiana doing relief work. He writes (and sends the above photo):
Was down in Ascension Parish today – Prairieville and St. Amant. It is terrible down there. Still flooding in places. People still can’t get in or out of some areas. Some small communities are still basically cut off. And, of course, where everyone can work, their belongings are piled high along the road. And, the smell. Dear Lord…
Just letting you know. Ascension has not gotten much help at all. Have the media just moved on already? This thing is far from over. Everywhere I went, people were telling me to get the word out that help was very much needed.
I typed “Ascension Parish” into Google News, and all I got were stories from Louisiana media. Today on CNN, Gov. John Bel Edwards said:
“Typically by this point in a storm, I think Red Cross would be receiving a lot more donations, I think there would be more volunteers signing up. Although we have some of that in place now, it would be very helpful if people would donate to the Red Cross, to the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, and also to come volunteer to help people get back in their homes as quickly as possible.”
Well, I think the Red Cross would be getting more donations if the media were down here showing America how bad it really is.
It’s so bad that Edwards, a Democrat, praised Donald Trump for his visit to Louisiana, saying Trump donated $100,000 to flood relief at a particular church (Trump also brought in a tractor-trailer full of relief supplies). From the Baton Rouge Advocate:
“I think … because it helped shine a spotlight on Louisiana and the dire situation that we have here that it was helpful,” Edwards told CNN’s Dana Bash.
Here’s a portion of a flood map produced by the Baton Rouge Chamber of Commerce, showing how much of Ascension Parish was flooded. Looks like two-thirds of the entire surface area of the parish.:
UPDATE: More info from Alan Cross, down in Ascension:
Churches that I met are getting ready for teams to come and I’m not sure they are coming. It is really sad. People just aren’t tracking with this. They asked me to let people know what they are going through so they would help and I promised I would. Man, it is hard to hear that. Everyone is working hard, but they need help.