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A Happy Ending
October 8, 2005 12:38 PM   Subscribe

A Happy Ending -- Days after Katrina struck and the levees broke an AP photographer took a photograph depicting a frail, elderly woman in a wheelchair -- her withered white hand clasping [a little girl's] tiny black hand," as they were being rescued from the New Orlean's convention center. The photo was "published on front pages around the nation, and the pair became a symbol of the disaster." The two are fine and living together -- along with the girl's grandmother -- as a new family in Houston.
posted by ericb (22 comments total)

 
Awesome and cool.
posted by alteredcarbon at 1:07 PM on October 8, 2005


Beautiful. If this is not too dorky: reminds me of the end of the musical Ragtime (based on the book by E.L. Doctorow) where a family consisting of an old-money WASP mother, Jewish immigrant father, and African American infant is thrown together as a result of the tragic events at the turn of the century. After all the societal bullshit collapses, reminds you of what it means to be human.
posted by Lisa S at 1:16 PM on October 8, 2005


very good to hear--thanks
posted by amberglow at 1:18 PM on October 8, 2005


*sniffles*
posted by matteo at 1:21 PM on October 8, 2005


I want to send them tacos. tacos of love.
posted by I Love Tacos at 1:40 PM on October 8, 2005


This southern white male teared up.
posted by Carbolic at 1:46 PM on October 8, 2005


Every time my wife tells me I spend too much time reading Metafilter I show her stories like this.



Stories like this make Marvin a happy cat.
posted by MarvinTheCat at 2:08 PM on October 8, 2005


Is it cynical for me to wonder if this story would be as touching if they were both black or both white?
posted by ColdChef at 2:23 PM on October 8, 2005


yes
posted by seawallrunner at 2:27 PM on October 8, 2005


This is very nice. Thanks, ericb.
posted by languagehat at 2:28 PM on October 8, 2005


Is it cynical for me to wonder if this story would be as touching if they were both black or both white?

Probably. I think it would still be touching regardless, but clearly, if they were both black or both white, it would receive the complimentary media spin.
posted by j.p. Hung at 2:38 PM on October 8, 2005


Woo Hoo! Good news on the Filter!
posted by sillygit at 2:45 PM on October 8, 2005


Awwww.
posted by delmoi at 5:04 PM on October 8, 2005


Probably. I think it would still be touching regardless, but clearly, if they were both black or both white, it would receive the complimentary media spin.

Actualy, we would probably not have heard about it, or ever seen the picture.
posted by delmoi at 5:05 PM on October 8, 2005


Thanks for reporting that story MSNBC. Racism is finally over!
posted by iamck at 7:48 PM on October 8, 2005


Actualy, we would probably not have heard about it, or ever seen the picture.

I think that's true, only because the photographer would have parsed the image s/he was seeing as members of the same family, one old, one young. So would anyone who saw such a photo, and therefore it would have escaped especial note among the thousands of others just like it. The difference in their race not only made for an interesting photo, but also caused people to wonder how two different-looking and different-aged people came to become traveling companions. We only wondered since they were not generally perceived as most-likely-related.
posted by Miko at 7:58 PM on October 8, 2005


I haven't been to New Orleans in about 30 years. However, when I was there (a few times), it always struck me that any racism down there didn't work the same as racism elsewhere in the South, or the rest of the States. This was something I loved about the place.

Everything I've learned about New Orleans supports this observation, although perhaps not as strongly as my impressions. All that to say, I'm not as affected by this as I might be, as I'd expect this of that city. While there no doubt were racial barriers, there was also a different sort of mutual respect present that was atypical of other places. I suppose this could have been rooted in the French influence.
posted by Goofyy at 11:43 PM on October 8, 2005


Wait, I'm totally confused. There's three women, and one was the neighbor. There's adopting going on? What has happened here -- I don't know why I'm not getting it.
posted by VulcanMike at 6:20 AM on October 9, 2005


Thanks for the post.

One of those stories that gives more hope in fellow man...
posted by dig_duggler at 9:42 AM on October 9, 2005


Thanks ericb...

...and then, of course, somebody goes and ruins it with:

Thanks for reporting that story MSNBC. Racism is finally over!

You know being a cynic 24/7 is not good for the digestion.
posted by tkchrist at 1:18 PM on October 9, 2005


Another very happy ending: Katrina evacuee hits jackpot: $1.6 million.
posted by funambulist at 3:11 PM on October 9, 2005


I don't have a problem with that picture getting more media attention than if it were a picture of two people of the same race. It is symbolic of what the world hopes to achieve one day.
posted by sultan at 7:32 AM on October 10, 2005


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