With the destruction of New Orleans and the wide spread damage caused by Hurricane Katrina, vermin masquerading as humans have been observed looting the abandoned homes and businesses of those who fled the storm for safety. Nothing other than the state of emergency currently declared in the area should be extended to incorporate facets of martial law.
Civil authorities appear manifestly incapable of responding to this scale of destruction and all available assets of the US military should be used to start the disaster remediation process. The first act should be to declare that looters will be arrested without warrant and treated to the harshest possible punitive measures. Desperate acts aside, there is enough assistance to keep these people alive until they can get their lives back on track again. The pictures of looters ransacking businesses displayed the opportunistic whims of those who prey on the frailties of human misery with reckless abandon.
Societies and communities are built upon principles designed to keep the individuals and larger groups safe, secure and able to life in relative prosperity. Once these entities get pressured from external influences such as natural disaster, war, economic downturns etc, the usual response is a gathering of resources and marshalling the available assets to rebuild and move on. Looting and other such behaviours fracture this trust, and lead to a breakdown of the very qualities that keep groups cohesive and functioning.
Looting in time of wars past was punishable by death. Clearly that level of threat has been removed, and now exposes the weakness inherent in the system. If there is a weakness or a niche that can be exploited, then the craven amongst us will do so. The threat of death has been removed, and they know that if caught, they can argue stress, necessity or temporary insanity as a causative ameliorative. It's just not true. The looters know exactly what they are doing, preying on the vulnerable, the weak, the defenceless. People's livelihoods that may have survived one of the worst natural storms in living memory are now prone to looting by disgusting examples of humanity.
Solution? Large signs around the city and wide spread radio and TV announcements that looters will be shot on sight. Hostile situations deserve hostile responses. Problem solved.
Cross posted at Bastards Inc.