Monday, October 18, 2010

Apologies to New Orleans

My good friend Chris Goodwin has quite properly taken me to task for the flip comment about New Orleans in my last post. Chris emphasizes the city's and region's overwhelming cultural, historical, and economic importance and very justly criticizes me for slandering it by suggesting that it's a lost cause. He argues that New Orleans is coming back and will be a stronger city than ever in the wake of its recent traumas.

I do apologize for any offense. My comment was a thoughtless one. It was driven by my unhappy belief that in the long -- and maybe not very long -- run we are not going to be able to do anything about global warming and the sea level rise that goes with it, so low-lying cities like New Orleans (to say nothing of the Pacific atolls to which I have attachments not unlike those Chris feels toward the Big Easy) are doomed. I'm not happy about that; I don't think it's a good thing, but I think it's a bullet we are probably going to have to bite and ought to be planning for. But for the sake of those whose roots or hearts lie in the bayous, along with the people of the atolls, San Francisco, Miami and Hong Kong, among many, many other places, I hope I'm wrong. Thanks, Chris.

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