.Gov to DC Residents: Your Screwed!
Yep. So much for any notion that DC is better off without guns. In a fascinating article today, the Washington Post - citing numerous local officials basically admit that any major emergency will send the DC area spiraling into New Orleans like chaos.
The U.S. Capitol and the White House have been fortified, police forces strengthened, high-tech security equipment purchased, vulnerable streets closed and checkpoints and barriers erected. In all, federal, state and local governments have spent more than $2 billion to protect the Washington area since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
Despite these efforts, security officials in the region concede that they fear another major terrorist strike would result in the kind of chaos and confusion seen along the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina.
Yep, cause when the Poop Hits The Fan, all those resources are going where they should - protecting the long term viability of the United States. Your individual life is worthless on balance.
Of course, some local politicians - scared for their jobs - are premptivly blaming the Feds.
After watching the bedlam in New Orleans after Katrina, Washington area officials said they are concerned about how much help they would get from the federal government and how quickly it would come.
"For four years, we've been hearing from the feds that they are going to take charge so we can respond to any catastrophe that comes our way," said Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan (D). "And here's the first major test, and it's a failure. . . . I've lost confidence in [the Federal Emergency Management Agency] to come in and be part of the solution.
Being somewhat involved in the planning at the local (town) level around here - I've got to say Doug Duncan is an idiot (but then, we already knew that after his utterly inept performance in the face of the snipers). Never once has the Federal Government told the locals it would come to their aid as first responder. Not here, not anywhere. What it has offered to do is work with the local government to assist in the development and coordination of emergency response plans.
But, don't expect the local governments to have done much of anything.
"What we lack is a coordinated public information system in the event of a major incident," said David Snyder, a member of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments' homeland security task force. "What we need is a system that will function instantaneously and automatically every time. . . . That doesn't exist now."
David Snyder is generally a good guy, and I consider him one of my friends. Politically, we have worked together a number of times and I helped him out when he ran for the House of Delegates - but I've got to point out something right here. While a Republican - he is a gun banning bigot. Sure, he might not be as bad as his opponent Jim Scott was - Dave will allow you to keep arms, but he sure doesn't appreciate your right to bear arms. Doug Duncan, across the river in Maryland wants to just ban them all - and laid the foundation for the house to house confiscations going on in New Orleans when he approved the house to house confiscation (for ballistic testing) of all AR-15s in Montgomery County during the sniper episode.
Yet, in light of their admitted failure to improve coordination amongst local emergence response agencies, or even to be somewhat self sufficient, local elected officials in the District of Columbia are still trying the keep the citizens disarmed (link to the video here).
Eleanor Holmes Norton, Mayor Anthony Williams, and corrupt and incompetent police chief Chuck Ramsey just don't get it.
Sadly, neither does my fence sitting good for nothing congressman, Tom Davis. I'd love to find a Democrat who did - and whom I could vote for instead. Davis would rather spend his time at the bar, drinking, than actually tackle a tough problem, or stand up for the rights of Americans - but what would you expect from a former County Supervisor.
I certainly wouldn't expect these folks to recognize the continuing need for the militia.
The several dozen people who did not evacuate from Algiers Point said that for days after the storm, they did not see any police officers or soldiers but did see gangs of intruders.
So they set up what might be the ultimate neighborhood watch.
At night, the balcony of a beautifully restored Victorian house built in 1871 served as a lookout point.
"I had the right flank," Vinnie Pervel said. Sitting in a white rocking chair on the balcony, his neighbor, Gareth Stubbs, protected the left flank.
They were armed with an arsenal gathered from the neighborhood: a shotgun, pistols, a flare gun and a Vietnam-era AK-47.
Luckily for me, in my neighborhood, my arsenal is considered small. Of course, some of the neighbors are without any guns. I don't really feel like protecting them, but I probably will, if needed.
UPDATE Sent to Beltway Traffic Jam