According to WWL TV in New Orleans, the hurricane has brought out looters.
“With much of the city emptied by Hurricane Katrina, some opportunists took advantage of the situation by looting stores. At a Walgreen’s drug store in the French Quarter, people were running out with grocery baskets and coolers full of soft drinks, chips and diapers.
When police finally showed up, a young boy stood in the door screaming, “86! 86!” — the radio code for police — and the crowd scattered. “
An August 11 2005 USA Today article noted the passage of an anti-price gouging law and stiffened penalties for looting.
“Civil action can be taken against price-gougers, including fines and restitution. Criminal penalties range up to six months in jail and $500 in fines for each violation.
Also, looting during states of emergency starts carrying heavier penalties on Monday: a three-year minimum prison sentence and up to 15 years. Backers of that bill said fear of being looted was a hindrance to getting storm-threatened residents to evacuate.”
One man watching the looters said.”To be honest with you, people who are oppressed all their lives, man, it’s an opportunity to get back at society.”
It is a surely measure of the character of a people what their thoughts turn to in a disaster. That ‘looting’ was foremost on their minds is reprehensible, to be sure. But it speaks volumes for the type of people they are, none of it good.
Get back at society?
I fervently hope this is an isolated incident.