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Crazed looters show worst of humanity

The devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina quickly brought out the best of human nature as people across the nation have already rallied to show support to those in need along the Gulf Coast.

Sadly, the hurricane also brought out the absolute worst in human nature too, as hundreds of looters ran wild throughout New Orleans and other ravaged areas. Though police are doing their best to contain the situation, lawlessness ensued.

If looters were only scavenging for basic survival tools - food, water, clothing, camping gear - we could understand because desperate times call for desperate measures.

One man was videotaped leaving a ransacked store carrying toothpaste, toothbrushes and deodorant. ''Look, I'm only getting necessities,'' he told an Associated Press reporter. ''All of this is personal hygiene. I ain't getting nothing to get drunk or high with.''

While we certainly don't condone any of this behavior, we can at least see how these situations could lead to these actions.

However, many looters are not consumed by the drive to survive, but by pure greed. Items on the hot list have been designer clothing, TVs, DVD, drugs, guns, liquor and more.

New Orleans Police are scrambling to restore order to a city that has gone from bad to worse. Even with the National Guard's help, New Orleans has regressed to an almost medieval state reminiscent of something you would see in a film.

But some looters sunk to the lowest depths of humanity Wednesday when they stole a bus from a nursing home that was going to be used to transport 80 elderly residents - many in wheelchairs - to a safer area.

Later Wednesday, a supply truck carrying food, water, medical supplies and pharmaceuticals - headed for a hospital - was held up by gunmen. Gunfire and arson fires disrupted the evacuation of the Superdome and many hospitals on Thursday as police decided not to risk any casualties until order could be restored.

These men and women should be dealt with harshly and quickly so that complete chaos does not take hold.

Katrina has forever changed the world for so many people but we hope that Americans do not allow it change the integrity and character we so love.