Two years after Katrina, many in the Gulf Coast are struggling to recover.
I'm not big on anniversaries, especially ones recognized by television. They always seem artificial to me. Maybe I'm just cynical about television, but whenever I hear a newscast making a big deal about the anniversary of an event, I always assume it must be a slow news cycle.
So why then, on the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, am I heading toward the Gulf Coast? I guess it's because today more people around the country may be willing to take a few moments to remember what happened and what continues to happen in New Orleans and Mississippi.
I've lost count how many times I've been to New Orleans since Katrina. I'm told we've done about 20 shows there after spending a month in the area immediately following the storm. I'm proud that CNN has remained commited to telling this story. A lot of other news organizations seem to have moved on. "Katrina fatigue" -- that's what some people call it.
As anyone in New Orleans or the Mississippi Gulf coast will tell you, the only people who have a right to "Katrina fatigue" are the people still waiting for their insurance company to reimburse them or those waiting for the long-promised Road Home money or those still trying to find help rebuilding their home or their business.
I know today a lot of reporters will descend on New Orleans, many for the first time since the last anniversary. I'm glad they will be there. This city, this region needs all the coverage it can get.
But let's not forget that tomorrow the cameras will leave, the anchors will fly home (myself included), but the people and their problems will remain. It's not enough to only think of them on this yearly anniversary. What they are going through is happening everyday, every week, month after month. Let's keep that in mind, let's keep them in mind, not just today, but everyday until their lives, their homes are restored.
Tonight we will be live in New Orleans, with many of the volunteers who have made a great difference in this city. We'll continue showing you what has worked, and what hasn't in the last two years. I hope you'll join us.
-- By Anderson Cooper