I just wanted to tell you that, despite the unfair shrapnel that you are taking in the press on behalf of the federal government, I believe you & your team are doing an amazing job of handling this unprecedented natural disaster and maintaining your focus on doing what FEMA was set up to do, which is saving lives and responding to disasters! I can imagine it must feel a little lonely right now & I wanted to let you know that I appreciate all that you are doing for me & our country.
When all the dust settles, you are always invited for a steak & a beer with your friends from Oklahoma!
Hang in there,
writer, name omitted, in an e-mail to Michael Brown, 9/7/2005
The Center for Public Integrity has released the collected e-mails of former FEMA chief Michael Brown. The 928-page document was requested under the Freedom of Information Act, and it provides more insight into the tragic, and sometimes comic, government response to Hurricane Katrina.
Bloggers are all over it. “In the Midst of Disaster, One Man Never Lost Sight of His Blackberry,” writes Wonkette. Gutterboy and Shakespeare’s Sister point to an e-mail about the use of the term ‘refugee’:
Just so you know, this is old news. The term refugee is forbidden here. These are Americans who are hurricane victims, they are evacuees displaced from their homes. I am tired, no, angered, by charges of racism. You know that neither me nor anyone associated with me is a racist. Grrrr.
How was that Sonic burger?
Michael Brown, in an e-mail to his press secretary, Sharon Worthy, 9/7/2005
Two months ago, we wondered how a playwright would tell this story in The Redemption of Michael Brown. It seems that the most powerful rendition would be a deadpan reading of his correspondences.