"The Cafferty File": Home heat or war?In the wake of the California wildfires, what lessons has the U.S. learned from Hurricane Katrina?
Since New Orleans was black, Democratic, and lower-class and San Diego is white, Republican, and upper-class, I imagine FEMA will shine this time around. -Ray, Lubbock, Texas
It seems to me that the people at Qualcomm are volunteering more than they did at the Superdome during the Katrina tragedy. State and local agencies may be more/better prepared but I think it makes a huge difference when more people volunteer to help! -Brian, Boulder, Colorado
It is obvious that improvements and lessons have been learned. But that is not what will be said. The better conditions and management in Southern California will be attributed to a whiter and richer population. And I am certain the media will perpetuate this fallacy. -Kim, Buffalo, New York
Jack, I have lived in Southern California my entire life and have seen disaster after disaster handled in the same way. This is no different. Do you notice the size of the houses burning and the areas in which they are built? I do feel terrible for these people, and I live in the hills myself, but they are a far cry from those in the Katrina disaster. Poorer people never get the same response as wealthier. -Greg, Los Angeles, California
Mr. Cafferty, I am in Maine stationed up here at the Naval Station and I was approached by my superiors with the question of if I would like to head out to California to help out with the fires??? I was very surprised by this and can say it has been about 24 hrs from the time the evacuations have begun to being told to stand-by to deploy to the area. Compared to Katrina, we are on point on this situation. And I truly feel we will be for any others in the near future.-Matthew, Brunswick, Maine
What’s the appropriate role for the military when it comes to the California wildfires?
I feel that the military should be used in these types of emergencies. If they are used to go and help "liberate" a foreign country, there is no reason why the government shouldn't use the military to help those in need in our own country. -Chris, Riverside, California
The military's responsibility is the same responsibility that I have if I come upon an accident and there is no one else available: do everything I can to help. -Alex, Buena Park, California
The military is doing its job: providing for the common defense. This time against an angry mother nature. It's much more appropriate than sending them to invade another country to benefit the rich. -James Allentown, Pennsylvania
Our military should do whatever is necessary to help fight the wildfires. The county of San Diego is home to quite a few Navy and Marine Corps bases and it is important that they help their neighbors during this time. I do believe that our military should help but not at the cost of leaving the bases vulnerable to spreading wildfires. As a community, we have to come together as one to heal from this disaster -Tiffany, Camp Pendleton, California