The whole world watched as Hurricane Katrina and the flooding of New Orleans exposed the deep racism of our country. Over 1,000 lives were lost and countless people were trapped in unspeakably horrible conditions for weeks as the U.S. government claimed helplessness in the face of this disaster that could have been minimized if the states and federal government had placed human needs before corporate greed.
Prisoners in state and county jails were abandoned. Many people in New Orleans were arrested while trying to feed and clothe themselves and their families.
We dedicate this issue of The Fire Inside to those prisoners, family members, attorneys, journalists and community activists who exposed the unspeakable conditions in jails and prisons in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Texas?and raised the call for investigation of these conditions and amnesty for everyone arrested in the aftermath of this disaster.