Self-Motivation
David Goggins
Former Navy Seal
Career Development
Bryan Cranston
Actor
Critical Thinking
Liv Boeree
International Poker Champion
Emotional Intelligence
Amaryllis Fox
Former CIA Clandestine Operative
Management
Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
Learn
from the world's big
thinkers
Start Learning

Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans? Then You Know How Wendell Pierce Feels.

The media treated the 10-year anniversary of Katrina with reverence. They should have been hard at work exposing the ugliness that still remains.

Wendell Pierce: September 8 front cover of The Wall Street Journal a couple of days after the flood in New Orleans from Katrina there — James Reeson, Andrew O’Dwyer said this is the best thing that ever happened to New Orleans. We’re going to be able to change it demographically, geographically, and politically. And if it doesn’t change, we’re out of here. Two huge businessmen who felt as though they were going to wield their power that way. That’s the coverage that we don’t hear about, how people actively use the disaster and the misfortune of others to benefit. That’s been an ongoing story when it comes to New Orleans that we have a great underclass that people benefit from. And to keep that underclass is important because that’s how people make money at the expense of others. And so the other story, the greatest crime, was the insurance companies not honoring any of the insurance policies. My parents paid Allstate for 50 years and they received $400. They said no, "We’re not going to — it was a disaster, flood, and so flood insurance is the only thing that’s going to be honored." And that was a policy that’s — a government policy that’s capped at $150,000. So most people were not able to come back. A lot of people couldn’t come back because the insurance policies that they had most of their lives weren’t honored and they weren’t able to be made whole.

And then active displacement of people. I call it displacement by delay. They tore down all public housing in New Orleans so they could rebuild them, you know, because that’s the best interest of the people. But they didn’t replace them one for one. Only one-third was public housing. And I was just in New Orleans two weeks ago, three weeks ago and they were just framing up large portions of those public housing developments 10 years after the fact. Now they know most of the people that were there 10 years ago are probably rooted someplace else. And that’s how you displace by delay. You take 10 years to rebuild a structure. The people that were in that structure will probably live someplace else. So that’s the sort of journalism and media attention that I wish was still happening in New Orleans because so much time and energy and money was spent around a 10-year commemoration to say everything is wonderful and great and there’s entrepreneurial spirit and we have new people coming into the city and all. And that’s all true but we don’t want to look at it through rose-colored glasses. It’s a tale of two cities and we don’t want to tell just the story about one.

As with nearly all New Orleans natives, Wendell Pierce and his family were devastated by the damage and aftermath of 2005's Hurricane Katrina. In this video, Pierce explains how it wasn't long after the water had receded that the proverbial leeches emerged for the feast.

Insurance companies refused to honor insurance policies. Reconstruction of public housing was delayed in order to force the people who depended on it to find some other city to live in. Myriad institutional procedures and machinations were organized so that local, predominantly African-American residents were excluded from the recovery. There are some who argue that Hurricane Katrina was the best thing to ever happen to the New Orleans because it allowed for rebirth. But which New Orleans are those people talking about?

And through all this ugliness and exclusionary tactics, the national media stayed silent and continues to stay silent.


The “new normal” paradox: What COVID-19 has revealed about higher education

Higher education faces challenges that are unlike any other industry. What path will ASU, and universities like ASU, take in a post-COVID world?

Photo: Luis Robayo/AFP via Getty Images
Sponsored by Charles Koch Foundation
  • Everywhere you turn, the idea that coronavirus has brought on a "new normal" is present and true. But for higher education, COVID-19 exposes a long list of pernicious old problems more than it presents new problems.
  • It was widely known, yet ignored, that digital instruction must be embraced. When combined with traditional, in-person teaching, it can enhance student learning outcomes at scale.
  • COVID-19 has forced institutions to understand that far too many higher education outcomes are determined by a student's family income, and in the context of COVID-19 this means that lower-income students, first-generation students and students of color will be disproportionately afflicted.
Keep reading Show less

Why is everyone so selfish? Science explains

The coronavirus pandemic has brought out the perception of selfishness among many.

Credit: Adobe Stock, Olivier Le Moal.
Personal Growth
  • Selfish behavior has been analyzed by philosophers and psychologists for centuries.
  • New research shows people may be wired for altruistic behavior and get more benefits from it.
  • Crisis times tend to increase self-centered acts.
Keep reading Show less

How Hemingway felt about fatherhood

Parenting could be a distraction from what mattered most to him: his writing.

Ernest Hemingway Holding His Son 1927 (Wikimedia Commons)
Culture & Religion

Ernest Hemingway was affectionately called “Papa," but what kind of dad was he?

Keep reading Show less

How DNA revealed the woolly mammoth's fate – and what it teaches us today

Scientists uncovered the secrets of what drove some of the world's last remaining woolly mammoths to extinction.

Ethan Miller/Getty Images
Surprising Science

Every summer, children on the Alaskan island of St Paul cool down in Lake Hill, a crater lake in an extinct volcano – unaware of the mysteries that lie beneath.

Keep reading Show less

The biology of aliens: How much do we know?

Hollywood has created an idea of aliens that doesn't match the science.

Videos
  • Ask someone what they think aliens look like and you'll probably get a description heavily informed by films and pop culture. The existence of life beyond our planet has yet to be confirmed, but there are clues as to the biology of extraterrestrials in science.
  • "Don't give them claws," says biologist E.O. Wilson. "Claws are for carnivores and you've got to be an omnivore to be an E.T. There just isn't enough energy available in the next trophic level down to maintain big populations and stable populations that can evolve civilization."
  • In this compilation, Wilson, theoretical physicist Michio Kaku, Bill Nye, and evolutionary biologist Jonathan B. Losos explain why aliens don't look like us and why Hollywood depictions are mostly inaccurate.
Keep reading Show less
Quantcast