Aside from Nagin and Blanco in New Orleans, the government officials in the Gulfcoast continue to demonstrate a remarkable lack of understanding of the situation for average citizens. This is from the Hattiesburg American:
"In Hattiesburg, where officers have been fighting looting and enforcing a curfew, officials have tried all week to find out when or if the city will get more help from other law enforcement agencies or from the National Guard. The help began arriving Thursday night in the form of 40 MPs - eight to work with Petal police, six for the Forrest County Sheriff's Department and the rest with Hattiesburg, said David Wynn, Hattiesburg police chief...
Gov. Haley Barbour said two battalions of military police from the Alabama National Guard have been ordered to Mississippi and the Pennsylvania National Guard will send 2,500 soldiers this weekend. The MPs will supplement 96 Hattiesburg officers split into two shifts working 12-hours a day, Wynn said. Lamar County Sheriff Danny Rigel asked for 25.
On the way into the Forrest County Emergency Operations Center, Barbour talked to Steve Dyer and David Lawson, co-owners of Lil' Butcher Shoppe. The men wanted to give away the store's meat before it spoiled and had come to the EOC to ask about security for the distribution. "We don't want things to get out of hand," Lawson said. "We're trying to do something good for the community."
As Barbour made his way toward the emergency operations building, Mayor Johnny DuPree told him of a similar request from a bank president who needed to cash checks for employees but was afraid of being robbed.
"I hope y'all work something out," Barbour said to DuPree. When questioned about his remark, Barbour said Hattiesburg already has National Guard troops on hand. Wynn and DuPree said the few National Guard troops who arrived in Hattiesburg on Wednesday are distributing ice and water, not helping with law enforcement."