federalism & gov structure impact on hurricane katrina

American federalism divides power and sovereignty between the national government and state governments. Although there are several clear benefits to this arrangement (for instance, local flexibility and responsiveness to community needs), it has long been recognized that federalism may make it difficult to coordinate actions across political jurisdictions and across levels of government.

For Reflection Paper #1, please write a short paper in which you consider how federalism and government structure impacted the response to Hurricane Katrina. In doing so, please discuss 1) what might have been done differently and 2) what obstacles officials faced. You should also 3) consider what the events of 2005 have to tell us about the US response to other major challenges, such as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Before writing, please be sure to complete the course readings on federalism and to watch the documentary "The Storm." Your reflection paper should be approximately 2 pages, in 12 point font with 1.5 line spacing. You should feel free to write more if necessary. You should use sources from the course, and should provide in text citations where appropriate.

The documentary may be found here:  

When writing an essay/reflection, you should strive to make a clear central argument and to ground your argument in evidence from the course (including the documentary and readings).