The media is often a considerable factor in how the public views the relative success or failure of the disaster response to major catastrophes like Hurricane Katrina. Do you think the media provides a good service to the public, or do you think the media is detrimental to the disaster response and recovery efforts? In your discussion, give an example to support your position.
PLEASE EXPLAIN WHY YOU AGREE WITH MY CLASSMATE RESPONSE TO THE ABOVE QUESTIONS? (A MINIMUM OF 125 WORDS)
The media has a tendency to personalize the suffering of victims and reporting negatively against the government oftentimes citing bureaucracy and indifference on the part of leaders (Rubin, 2012). During Katrina Rubin (2012) asserts that the media focus was on the stranded residents in the Superdome and Moriel Convention Center which put political pressure on local leaders. This pressure led to confusion acquiring buses for evacuation, contradictory orders by state and federal entities and further hardship on victims through delays in assistance and evacuation (Rubin, 2012). During disasters Rubin (2012) asserts the media typically over reports on lawlessness and looting; however, most people typically do not loot remain calm and abide by the law and directions by local officials. In addition to the aforementioned concerns following Hurricane Katrina the media focused most stories on the government’s response and less often addressing individuals’ and communities’ level of preparedness or responsibility (Barnes et.al. 2008). Due to this focus most viewers attributed the federal government’s lack of responsiveness for the death and human suffering in regard to response and recovery with limited reporting of the local government and state’s limited mitigation or preparation efforts.
Barnes, M. D., Hanson, C. L., Novilla, L. B., Meacham, A. T., McIntyre, E., & Erickson, B. C. (2008). Analysis of Media Agenda Setting During and After Hurricane Katrina: Implications for Emergency Preparedness, Disaster Response, and Disaster Policy. American Journal Of Public Health, 98(4), 604-610. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2007.112235
Rubin, C. B. (Ed.). (2012). Emergency management: The American experience 1900-2010 (2nd ed.). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.