The Fear Factor

New Orleans City Councilman Oliver Thomas just asserted on WWL TV that a couple of hundred New Orleanians--and he named their professions, white collar all--have been denied refuge and put back on buses to go out of state without being told their destination. He quoted one of the women in the group as saying, "If I'da been lucky, I would have died." In a tear-filled monologue, Thomas said communities around Louisiana were refusing to accept refugees from New Orleans because of fear caused by media coverage of "the same few looters--I see the same pictures over and over again". "I saw looting in (mainly white) Jefferson Parish when I was on my way back in bringing water," he continued. And he said of a location in New Orleans where rumors of a "riot" had spread through Jefferson Parish, "It didn't happen. I was there. It didn't happen." Thomas, saying the vast majority of New Orleanians were good people, said people were llooking for refuge "not in Russia, not in China, not in Utah, but in their own state." He did thank the people of Texas for "being neighborly".