There are lots of lessons to take away from the tragedy in New Orleans post-Katrina. The most poignant one to me is how quickly our veneer of civilization and order can break down. At the end of the day, you can only rely on yourself and your family to take care of yourselves.
All those idealists who think that the government should take care of them to the exclusion of all personal responsibility should take a good hard look at what happened in the Big Easy. "I don't need to protect my family. The police will do that." Yeah right. Faced with the incredible scope of the catastrophe, many of the beleaguered local police burned out or in some cases, joined the looters. Some people who had the foresight and self-reliance to keep their own guns were able to protect their families and property.
Hopefully, no one else will ever face the challenges confronting the people affected by Katrina or would ever have to defend themselves from another bad guy, but the stakes are simply too high to rely on hope or a thin blue line of police. I prefer to have the option to choose to defend my family if needed.