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Shepard Smith - Is This How We Should Help Those People Who Have Not Had A Perfect Existence Before?

Reported by Donna - September 6, 2005

There was an interesting exchange on Studio B between Shepard Smith and Amy Liu, who is now with the Brookings Institute and used to be with the Department of Housing and Urban Development under the Clinton administration.

Amy Liu said one of the most important things the Federal Government could do now would be to give out 10's of thousands of emergency housing vouchers and get these people out of shelters.

It was a good segment until Smith asked Liu this question:

(Paraphrased but pretty much verbatim)

Shepard Smith: 'Is that the kind of thing, that you see, that we have the infrastructure to make happen, for people, who had not a perfect existence prior to this storm?'

Ms. Liu went on to say that in the past we focused on home owners, but this time we need to work on rental assistence and we needed to get these people the vouchers and encourage the apartment owners (who have been hesitant in the past) to help with this program.

Fox ran a banner that said approximately 500,000 were homeless because of Hurricane Katrina. Smith thanked her and agreed that these people need help.

Comment: What, exactly was Smith trying to say when he asked that question? Why was it necessary to call them 'people who had not a perfect existence prior to this storm?'

Why is there the necessity to refer to those made homeless by this storm as 'people who had not a perfect existence prior to this storm?' What does that mean? People who are poor? People who are living in poverty? Is he asking why we should help poor people?

I'm sorry, I don't know why this has to be quantified. Shouldn't we just help people in need regardless of what they had before? Why is this so important to Fox that they have to frame their question this way?

Maybe I'm being touchy, but it's been a rough 8 days for a lot of people and a lot of people are angry by the slow response and the deaths that followed. I'll just report and let you decide. Thanks.

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