Monday, November 21, 2005

New Orleans family and misplaced liberal intentions

JB Doubtless from Fraters Libertas was one step ahead of me on this one: "Best intentions weren't enough to make a home". See his insightful post here on the story of the "displaced" New Orleans family that was taken in by two lesbians from Montevideo, MN of all places. This deal had bad juju from the start.

Stunned by the evacuees' desperation, a white Montevideo family of five opened its hearts and home to an impoverished, three-generation black family of eight from Louisiana.
The striking thing about this article is how oddly it is written. It's not hard to see that the New Orleans family, how shall we say, hasn't had much exposure to polite society. The reporter, Jill Burcum, takes great pains to minimize the reports of uncivilized behavior.

[Here's the original Rambix post on this story, from 10/2/05, when things were happy, happy]

The N.O. family lasted about a month. Here's Ms. Burcum's description of the parting:

Barely a month after arriving in Montevideo, Nicole and Dorothy (Dot) Singleton, the mother and grandmother of the Louisiana family, broke ties with their hosts, Tracey and Tanya Thornbury, and moved to the Twin Cities.

The parting was painful and sometimes ugly.

The Thornburys called the Montevideo police to their home. When it was time to take the kids out of the Thornbury home and to the Twin Cities, Dot Singleton asked Chippewa County Family Services to assist.

Each family still feels bruised, though calm has come with time and distance.
The Thornburys called the police to their home...why? That's a substantial fact, but there is no reason given. And "each family feels bruised"? What kind of new age gibberish is that? Rambix has an alternate suggestion: "The Thornburys invited these ingrates into their home, and in no time they took advantage of the lesbian's generosity".

In the crowded house, which has five bedrooms but limited space in the living room and dining room, tensions built. There were charges that the Singletons weren't doing their fair share of the chores. There were differences over what types of movies the kids could watch. Then there were letters from Nicole's boyfriend, in jail for felony burglary in Louisiana. The Thornburys worried that the boyfriend would get out on parole and come to Montevideo, so they read the letters.
Ok, so the Singletons are lazy, ungrateful, demanding, have felon criminal boyfriends; why not let them into your home with your young children?

It gets better:

Dot stayed behind with the kids. The Thornburys grew concerned about her, too, and believed she was drinking a lot of whiskey every night.
What the lesbians didn't know is that they generously opened their home to a family from the very bottom of society. Race isn't necessarily an issue here; the underclass is the underclass, and behavioral problems can go hand-in-hand with that strata of society. Unfortunately, they found out the hard way. This is consistent with liberalism, however. Conservatives simply use common sense to figure this stuff out in advance. Liberals have to be hit over the head a few times to get the picture.

If you read the article, take note of the strange way it's written. Ms. Burcum presents it as though the Singelton's behavior is normal, but just different from the Thornbury's, and thus the conflict. She doesn't consider the fact that the Singleton's are lowlifes. Are there lowlifes in Ms. Burcum's world?

Thanks, JB, for exposing the other side of this story.