Hurricane Sandy Aftermath: In Long Island, Food and Gas Run Out, and Residents Turn On Government Agencies

As New York City commences its fifth consecutive day without power, residents are starting to get angry, and hungry.

Emergency services have been focusing on lower Manhattan for the most part, the heart of the city, and through which the subway lines all intersect, making travel between the five buroughs possible.  However, in the outskirt areas, notably the Rockaways, which lie at the edge of Queens and the city at large, near JFK Airport, hurricane relief workers and utility companies have been largely no-shows as food runs out and looters begin taking to the streets.

What was billed as a chance for President Obama to look presidential is starting to backfire. Five days into the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, with the death toll rising, FEMA has not been able to adequately meet the needs of New Yorkers, and people who praised Obama early in the game are starting to change their opinions.

While posing for another FEMA photo-op today, the president dodged a question lobbed by reporters from the press pool regarding the frustrations of New Yorkers who are still without power, and now facing food shortages and freezing temperatures at night

In the Rockaways, the area which arguably received the most crushing damage in New York City, losing entire neighborhoods to fire and subway damage that will likely put them out of train service for a month or longer, anger is running high.

Rockaway residents, a mixed crowd of hipsters, surfers, elderly, and housing projects, complain that the Long Island Power Authority (not ConEdison, the main supplier of New York City power) who is responsible for power in that area, has largely ignored them in favor of wealthier areas on Long Island.  Likewise, with no Red Cross, NYC or FEMA workers in site, the residents can't help but feel abandoned, many of them taking matters into their own hands.  

Looters run rampant, posing as utility workers, complete with uniforms, checking in on residents at midnight or later, and robbing them. Outside the Rockaways, a similar situation is playing out at Coney Island, where residents are arming themselves with whatever they can find. 

They may have to wait a bit longer for help. FEMA has run out of water and won't be making another delivery until Monday, according to the latest reports. Suddenly the stockpiles of water and food assembled by Mitt Romney in Ohio, an object of derision by the left, is starting to look pretty useful. 

As Obama begins to look less like a concerned public servant, and more like a politician not letting this crisis "go to waste," Mitt Romney's word's about relying on the federal government as little as possible is starting to resonate. 

How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Ethan Case

A moderate from Northern NJ, I work as a Mechanical Engineer in NYC's building industry with expertise in architecture, construction, green building, and energy modeling.

MORE FROM

Hillary Clinton says Republicans will be the "death party" if they pass health care bill

Hillary Clinton spoke out against the Republican's proposed bill on Twitter.

It's time to redefine the clitoris, according to sex education experts

"Words matter. They shape and mold our ideas and beliefs about our purpose, our bodies, our self-worth and our place in the world around us."

Al-Jazeera becomes a target amid Qatar diplomatic crisis

Gulf states are demanding the broadcaster be shut down.

5 blocks of London apartments to be evacuated over potentially flammable cladding

800 North London apartments will be evacuated following a fire inspection that turned up evidence that the buildings could be unsafe.

Tomi Lahren wants to rally women to her side after criticizing feminists and "pro-choicers"

"My view on abortion is not black-and-white," Lahren said.

These 5 states are drafting laws to limit protests on college campuses

The legislation is intended to protect free speech on campus.

Hillary Clinton says Republicans will be the "death party" if they pass health care bill

Hillary Clinton spoke out against the Republican's proposed bill on Twitter.

It's time to redefine the clitoris, according to sex education experts

"Words matter. They shape and mold our ideas and beliefs about our purpose, our bodies, our self-worth and our place in the world around us."

Al-Jazeera becomes a target amid Qatar diplomatic crisis

Gulf states are demanding the broadcaster be shut down.

5 blocks of London apartments to be evacuated over potentially flammable cladding

800 North London apartments will be evacuated following a fire inspection that turned up evidence that the buildings could be unsafe.

Tomi Lahren wants to rally women to her side after criticizing feminists and "pro-choicers"

"My view on abortion is not black-and-white," Lahren said.

These 5 states are drafting laws to limit protests on college campuses

The legislation is intended to protect free speech on campus.