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Katrina's other victims

So many people lost everything in the storm -- why must they be forced to give up their beloved pets, too?
 
 
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It wasn't just humans that were killed, maimed, starved and displaced by Hurricane Katrina -- animals were, too.

In fact, thousands of animals were killed in the disaster -- and, because FEMA is not allowing victims to evacuate with their pets, thousands of critters are being left to their own devices (i.e. to starve to death) in New Orleans.

What's the sense in this? I understand the problem of limited space and resources. But isn't it an even crueler blow to separate people from their pets at a time when both could, undoubtedly, use any extra warmth, care and comfort they can possibly get?

So many people lost everything in Katrina -- why must they be forced to give up their beloved cats and dogs, too?

It makes me very upset. But I am, admittedly, the sort of person who would toss my cats to safety from a burning building long before jumping myself. (Yes, I'm an animal nut).

If you feel strongly -- as I do -- that forcing Katrina’s victims to abandon their pets is wrong, please take a moment to call on Michael Brown to immediately order his subordinates and their volunteers to evacuate animals with their human families.

You can write to Brown here:

The Honorable Michael Brown
Under Secretary of Homeland Security for Emergency Preparedness and Response
500 C St. S.W.
Washington, DC 20472
202-646-3900 / 202-646-3930 (fax)
email: FEMAOPA@dhs.gov

Another thing you can do is contact New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin directly, asking him to ensure that his constituents are allowed to bring their companion animals along when being evacuated.

Laura Barcella is an Associate Editor at AlterNet.