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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 07:08 AM
Original message
Rosedale Court is a public housing project in Tuscaloosa
Edited on Fri May-06-11 07:08 AM by Syrinx
Or I should say it was before the tornado.

Last week it was pretty much wiped from the earth.

It is impossible to overstate the violence of the storm.

“It was so sad to see those babies,” she said of people who lost their lives on her street. “I saw an arm sticking out, but there was no body attached to it

A fourteen-year-old boy was sucked out of his apartment by the tornado.

Justin Leeric Thomas of the 2900 block of 10th Avenue east was found dead at 440 30th Place, almost four miles away.

http://cw.ua.edu/2011/05/01/in-rosedale-what-little-we-... /

That's from the student newspaper at UA, which has been putting the commercial papers to shame, with their coverage of the disaster.

And the disaster is epic and ongoing.

NBC-Universal had their whole A-Team here for a few days after the storm. Brian Williams, Lester Holt, Jim Cantore, etc. Then Osama bin Laden got killed, and now it's like it never happened. Well it did happen. It's still a major event, even if it's no longer a "story."

And I don't mean to make it all about Tuscaloosa. Countless communities in Alabama and Mississippi have been devastated.

But I couldn't believe what I saw Thursday when I drove around the back roads and alleys of the area.

Very large slices of Tuscaloosa have been erased from the map. Totally wiped out. Nothing there.

And I know they are here to help, and we couldn't get by without them, but still, it is very unsettling to see so many military vehicles everywhere you look, especially since it looks like we were hit with a nuclear weapon.

It's surreal and dystopian.

I was a little kid back in 1974, I think, when what we considered to be a major tornado hit Tuscaloosa. If I recall correctly, one person was killed in that storm. That very unlucky person was a maid in a motel called the Scottish Inn, I think.

On that scale, this storm was 41 times worse, so far. In terms of infrastructure, it's probably more like 400 or 4000 times worse. I'm not kidding.

And we are going to need the help of the federal government.

It's probably not appropriate to talk about this kind of stuff at this time. And I know that Alabama routinely votes 60% republican. But just so you know, the city of Tuscaloosa leans liberal. Tuscaloosa went for Obama over McCain. And Mayor Walt Maddox used to work for the state teacher's union, so he probably isn't a Republican.

I'm saddened that the wind suddenly sucked out all the energy from his progressive plans, and now his effort will be directed toward digging us out of this hole. At least we got the amphitheater built, and it survived.

I guess I'll let you all go now. So sorry to ramble on like that. I intended to post the excerpt from the CW, and be done. But I'm just so wound up with anxiety. It's really a mess down here.
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malaise Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 07:14 AM
Response to Original message
1. K & R
Alabama must remain visible
:cry: :cry:
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 07:42 AM
Response to Reply #1
5. thank you
you are very nice. thank you so much.
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malaise Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 08:49 AM
Response to Reply #5
10. You're welcome
I know your state is facing a major crisis, :fistbump:
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Melinda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 07:20 AM
Response to Original message
2. Please don't apologize for feeling as you do - your DU family is here to listen & support
Edited on Fri May-06-11 07:21 AM by Melinda
you and your neighbors all that we can. It's normal to suffer anxiety after a such horrific event, and if you need to 'ramble', then you just go ahead. We'll listen - we care.

I know many here who have donated to the Red Cross this past week, but hopefully your words will inspire more of us to help in any way we can.

Sending you big hugs from CA. :hug:

Melinda

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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 07:46 AM
Response to Reply #2
6. thank you Melinda from California
You are a very nice person.

I want to stress that I haven't been directly affected by the tornado, by my, oh, my, my town looks a whole lot different now.

I love you, and people like you! :hug:
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 07:58 PM
Response to Reply #2
20. Yes, we are. Please come back.
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Raven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 07:21 AM
Response to Original message
3. I lived in Glendale Gardens in 1974 and remember that tornado.
It took the roof off the house next door, skipped us and deposited the roof in our backyard. I think Glendale was hit again in this storm, do you know if it was?
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 07:50 AM
Response to Reply #3
7. Glendale Gardens sounds familiar
But I can't remember exactly where that is.

You're Will's mom, aren't you?

Seriously, where is Glendale Gardens. It sounds totally familiar.

:hi:
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Raven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 09:39 AM
Response to Reply #7
16. Yes, I'm Will's mom. He was a baby when we lived there. Glendale
Garden is a small neighborhood on a cul d sac not far from the UoA campus. Will's dad was a law student there. If you google it you'll find some sites with tornado damage pictures.
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 07:07 AM
Response to Reply #16
22. I'm a great admirer of Redding Pitt
I still think he would make a fine governor. :)

Glendale Gardens sounds a lot like a "Monopoly" property, doesn't it?

I thank you for still caring about Tuscaloosa. It's going to turn out okay. It's got to, right?
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eShirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 07:35 AM
Response to Original message
4. k&r
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madrchsod Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 08:21 AM
Response to Original message
8. the student newspaper is doing a great job...
i guess they are`t being told what to print....

another new orleans...big news for a few days and the country moves on.
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 08:40 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. that's a great way to look at it
Tuscaloosa News is owned by the NYT. And most of the other big papers are owned by the same big company, that I can't remember the name of. Thanks for the great comment.
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 09:30 AM
Response to Reply #8
15. "another new orleans...big news for a few days and the country moves on."
And the suicides later are ignored.

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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 11:44 AM
Response to Reply #8
26. Maybe there is hope the next generation will have a bit more compassion.
I appreciated the link... that is a very good article!
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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 09:20 AM
Response to Original message
11. forgive me. I don't think you know how fucked up it is.
Destruction everywhere. Really.

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OneGrassRoot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 09:24 AM
Response to Original message
12. Please keep posting, as you can.
You're providing invaluable commentary and insight. If okay with you, I'd like to repost elsewhere.

:hug:

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Syrinx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 09:28 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. repost me everywhere, if it helps
I can't imagine it will, but if it does.

It's just destruction everywhere. Beyond beyond.
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 09:29 AM
Response to Original message
14. I'm having a hard time reading this. It rips my heart out. MORE poor people devastated. MORE low-
income housing wiped out.

And it is invisible to "progressives". WHY isn't this a big story on "progressive" media? Ed can scream about country music, but can't bring this to our attention? WHAT THE FUCK?!

This nation LOSES desparately needed low-income housing every year, and yet we can't even MENTION it???

Do you have any information about the survivors... where have they gone, what do they need, is there any effort to get them the supplies they need?

I want to do what I can to make people aware of this... please let me know what information you have.

And thank you. Thisis so hard to hear,, but I am grateful for you posting it.

:yourock:
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GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 01:51 PM
Response to Reply #14
27. It is absolutely devastating!
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Generic Other Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 10:19 AM
Response to Original message
17. It's awful how they report ongoing tragedies
like they were episodes of reality TV. Next week--new episode. Katrina, BP, Fukushima, Tuskaloosa...once the news cycle is done, almost impossible to find information or keep public awareness alive.

So sad to hear of all this loss of life and property.
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 12:45 PM
Response to Original message
18. I hope you are still "on" here... I'd really like to see this get more attention.
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 02:45 PM
Response to Original message
19. another kick because this needs to be seen
:kick:
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Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-06-11 10:47 PM
Response to Original message
21. My God, My God!!!
:cry:
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crickets Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 10:04 AM
Response to Original message
23. ...
:hug:
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ScreamingMeemie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
24. ...
:kick:
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jwirr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 11:17 AM
Response to Original message
25. Unfortunately, I wonder if the public housing will be rebuilt? Have
they rebuilt the public housing in NO yet? At the time of the NO flooding the rich in NO saw it as a good way to get rid of the public housing - hopefully the people of Tuscaloosa are better people.
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 01:54 PM
Response to Reply #25
28. Good question, and I would be very surprised. Not unless, that is, people like DUers start
a big fuss about it.

The demolition of public housing across the country has excelerated, and the loss of low-income housing stock is growing greatly.

Yet, it is not a progressive issue.

WHY NOT?
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GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #25
29. Public housing is far more likely to be demolished than rebuilt. (See facts within post)
Edited on Sat May-07-11 03:41 PM by GreenPartyVoter
• In the last several years, HUD has been tearing down thousands of low-income units across the country. http://www.cbpp.org/files/2-1-07hous2.pdf

• After Katrina, 4,000 low-income units were destroyed in New Orleans, although they could have been made habitable. None of these lost units was replaced. http://www.cbpp.org/files/2-1-07hous2.pdf

• In Chicago, the Housing Authority demolished 3,300 units of public housing and planned to replace it with only 1,800 units, a loss of 1,500 units. http://news.change.org/stories/is-it-too-late-to-save-p...

• Over the past ten years, Atlanta has spent almost $15 million to bulldoze 15,000 units of public housing. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/21/us/21atlanta.html

• According to a 2001 HUD report, 1.14 million affordable housing units were lost between 1997 and 1999. There are many reasons for this loss, but among other causes, when HUD privatized the building of new units, the contracts stipulated that, at the end of the 20-year contract, the owner could opt to convert the units from subsidized to market value. As each development reaches this 20-year mark, many units are lost to conversion from low-income to market. http://www.cbpp.org/files/2-1-07hous2.pdf and http://www.huffingtonpost.com/george-lakoff/hud-is-tryi...

• There are 9 million households in need of low-income housing. There are 6 million available units. http://www.nlihc.org/doc/FactSheet.pdf

• During the negotiations to demolish the former New Orleans St. Thomas Housing Project in 2002, developers started out promising that 50% of the units would be affordable. But in the end only 9% were affordable one study showed. http://www.atlantaprogressivenews.com/news/0218.html

• In Atlanta in August of 2010, the housing authority severely underestimated the number of people who would show up to apply for Section 8 housing. There are only 15,000 available units in Georgia, When 30,000 applicants arrived, some who had been waiting in line for 2 days, the office was unable to handle the response, and 62 people were injured. http://www.ajc.com/news/atlanta/housing-crisis-reaches-...

• According to a 2001 HUD report, 1.14 million affordable housing units were lost between 1997 and 1999. There are many reasons for this loss, but among other causes, when HUD privatized the building of new units, the contracts stipulated that, at the end of the 20-year contract, the owner could opt to convert the units from subsidized to market value. As each development reaches this 20-year mark, many units are lost to conversion from low-income to market. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/george-lakoff/hud-is-tryi...

• In many cities, there are no longer even waiting lists for subsidized housing. In Atlanta, although there were no vacancies available, an announcement was made that they would open a waiting list for one day. Thirty thousands people arrived to apply, some in line for days. 15K applications were handed out, and 62 people were taken to the hospital suffering from heat stroke. http://www.ajc.com/news/atlanta/housing-crisis-reaches-...
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 07:20 PM
Response to Reply #29
34. Thank you for posting this information. I hope DUers understand how desparate the situation is!
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GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 07:51 PM
Response to Reply #34
35. I doubt that they do. This info is not being broadcast in the media at large, so unless they
go looking for it.. or even know _what_ to go looking for... they're in the dark. :(
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crickets Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-08-11 01:03 AM
Response to Reply #29
39. That's appalling.
I know I had no idea it was this bad. Thanks for posting about it here, but could you repost it in a standalone please? More people need to know about it, or have another chance to see it if they missed it before.
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GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-08-11 11:28 AM
Response to Reply #39
41. Sure thing!
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-08-11 11:35 AM
Response to Reply #39
42. Great idea, crickets! There is so much that progressives don't know about homelessness.
The problem is, a thread like that doesn't get much attention.

If you could help us with that, it would be much appreciated.

Green Party Voter is doing a great job with the research, etc, and it would be great if you could help with getting more people to see it.

Thanks so much! :yourock:
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nolabear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 03:56 PM
Response to Original message
30. Too late to rec but BIG kick. I'm so glad you're keeping this topic alive.
And I'm glad those students are. I'll spread the word where I can.
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Chorophyll Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 04:18 PM
Response to Original message
31. Kick.
:cry: :kick:
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AverageJoe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 05:55 PM
Response to Original message
32. Fellow Tuscaloosa resident here
Great job, Syrinx. Thank you for writing this.
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 09:14 PM
Response to Reply #32
37. Do you know what is happening to these people in low-income housing who were left homeless?
:cry:
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AverageJoe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-08-11 12:44 AM
Response to Reply #37
38. I don't know
During Katrina, we had a lot of people come here from along the Gulf Coast and NOLA and many stayed in a makeshift facility in the UA fitness center. I haven't heard what's happening to the displaced here, but that's a very good question.
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-08-11 11:21 AM
Response to Reply #38
40. Thank you. And, I hope you will poke around and see if you can find out.
These are people who get forgotten.... as you can see even from this thread, it isn't a popular topic. We need to make them our business.

And after media attention dies down (if there even *is* any media attention... it looks like the only ones who wrote about this are students!), they fade from view and without followup, the worst can happen.

After Katrina, when the people were sent all over the country, as the media attention died down, they were quietly sent from the places where they had been "stashed", and with no place to go and no way to survive, the number of suicides went sky high. As progressives, we need to insert ourselves in this issue, to make sure that this doesn't keep happening. Our poor people deserve better in the richest country in the world!

I also hope you read the facts that Green Party Voter posted about destruction of low-income housing:
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

It is something we should all KNOW, and should be following up and making noise about!

Thank you! :yourock:
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onethatcares Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 06:03 PM
Response to Original message
33. you can feel free to ramble on,
I've been looking for any msm coverage on the twisters and haven't seen any in a long time. Along with the Mississippi River flooding. I guess the total destruction of cities and towns in America isn't as interesting as what's happenng in Lybia.

Geez, what are the food prices going to be like next year after all this farmland has been flooded?
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-07-11 08:02 PM
Response to Reply #33
36. What is going to happen to all the homeless people who have NO WHERE to go because they lost another
low-income housing building, and it WON'T BE REPLACED??

They will be homeless for years, waiting for a place to live, and then labeled "Chronically Homeless" and assumed to be alcoholics and addicts, etc.

Yet, who cares about that???
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KamaAina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-09-11 11:57 AM
Response to Original message
43. Maybe he could put a progressive spin on the rebuilding
Edited on Mon May-09-11 12:09 PM by KamaAina
a lot of us were hoping that would happen in NOLA. No such luck.

Imagine if all those new buildings were to be built green. And accessible (universal design). And transit-friendly (I'm imagining a road and bus line right down the middle of the path, called -- you guessed it -- "Tornado Alley". :-) ) Maybe then us latte liberals on the coasts would stop crinkling up our noses when we hear the word "Alabama"!
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bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-09-11 12:05 PM
Response to Reply #43
44. Its going to take a lot more than "hoping". There are NO "progressive" actions
for getting the necessary housing.

Everyone is waiting for everyone else to do it.
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ProdigalJunkMail Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-09-11 12:22 PM
Response to Original message
45. i was in that storm in '74
and i thought it was bad...granted i was a kid. i do still remember it well...hang tough. will be back down there this weekend...

sP
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