The Problem With New Orleans

There’s a slogan that’s been passed around the city of New Orleans since the flooding of 2005.  “The City That Care Forgot.” Maybe it’s older than that, I don’t know, but it adorns many a t-shirt and bumper sticker.  The City That Care Forgot.

Now if those of you who speak English are confused, there’s a reason for that.  It doesn’t make any fucking sense.  Care isn’t a noun.   Only an idiot would say that, much less wear it on a t-shirt.

But grammatically incorrect or not, the statement does a fair job of illucidating the problem with New Orleans. The first instinct is to pass the buck on blame.  The city that care forgot suggests that it has fallen on hard times because no one wants to help it.   It’s someone else’s fault.  What’s sad is that people actually believe this horse shit.  Just look at rapper/ jackass/ racist cunt Kanye West’s simplistic summation of the the flooding of 2005 at the Katrina benefit special. “George Bush duh-does not care uhb- about black people.”  Way to go Kanye, thanks for being the only dick in the room who uses a benefit concert to express an unfounded political belief at a fucking benefit concert.  (Pssssst!  K- there weren’t just black people in the city. Stick to what you do best… uhhh.  Doing drugs and having sex with mentally handicapped strippers.)

Yeppers. It’s George Bush’s fault.  Not Kathleen Blanco, the Governor of Louisiana, or the snake to her mongoose, Ray Nagin, the mayor of New Orleans.  Blanco and Nagin are bitter enemies who would rather re-enact a Spy vs Spy cartoon strip than execute a proper evacuation of the danger radius.  Nagin himself abandoned the city and his subordinates for the greener pastures of Dallas.  So much for that whole “the Captain goes down with his ship” thing, huh Sugar Ray?  Since 2005, Ray Nagin has in fact done jack shit for the city.  It’s understandable though.  Here’s a list of his accomplishments in the last 3 years.

  • Gone off on multiple blatantly racist tirades, including one at a MLK Day speech.
  • Been re-elected despite telling the majority of his constituents that he only wants black people in New Orleans, not them.
  • Requested a third term.
  • Spent most of his time on the road getting paid thousands of dollars per event to tell people in other states tales of his bravery under pressure and tireless commitment to rebuilding New Orleans.
  • Been honored as the black mayor of the year.
  • Used city funds to take his wife out on expensive dates and buy her things.
  • Hired his brother to fraudulently build buildings that don’t exist.
  • Do little to nothing to help with rebuilding New Orleans.
  • Do little to nothing to curb the ridiculous per capita crime rate post 2005.

But no, it’s George Bush at fault.  The billions upon billions of dollars allotted to the city (and subsequently poorly invested by Louisiana’s leadership and citizenry) were simply not enough, despite the fact that New Orleans’ recompense eclipsed the amount of money given to Biloxi Mississippi which was hit dead on by the Hurricane (and by the way was pretty much rebuilt after a year, even though Louisiana still isn’t up to speed).

Pass the blame.  Don’t take responsibility.  Be greedy.  This is the holy trinity of Louisiana and New Orleans government.  Did you know Walt Disney had selected Louisiana to build Walt Disney World?  The men in charge tried to hit him up for bribes and kick backs so old Walt told them to get fucked and then proceed to deliver some truly heinous round house kicks to their collective heads, DUMBO STYLE!!!!!!  …  ahem.  okay i made the last bit up. Why does the French Quarter constantly smell like piss and beer?  Because people piss in the streets and spill beer everywhere.  Why are Louisiana and New Orleans consistently ranked among the lowest in education rate in the nation (often ranked number one)?  Because the School Board was embezzling millions for years from the budget.  THEY WERE LITERALLY STEALING CHILDREN’S FUTURES.

And yet people continue to pretend.  There’s a writer for the Times Picayune, Chris Rose.  He’s considered somewhat of a local celebrity, and he is in fact a talented, eloquent writer.  The only piece I’ve ever read of his column was about how hard it is to live in New Orleans because of the crime and lack of general kindness and all the other bullshit.  But then, he notes, he remembers…

  • The food is better than anywhere else in the country. (Bearing in mind he hasn’t been everywhere in the country.)
  • They have the zoo and the aquarium.
  • Mardi Gras and Jazz Fest.
  • {You can hear more and better live music than anywhere else in the country except maybe for New York or Los Angeles and most of the good bands from New Orleans anyway.

By the time I got to that last bit, which is a nearly word for word quote by the way, I had torn the paper in half from sheer rage at the ludicris statements made in his article.  For one thing, New Orleans isn’t a big city, so in order for NYC and LA to be populated with NOLA bands, we would all have to play a goddamn instrument and move.  Secondly, New Orleans is nowhere near the top 3 in most important cities musically.  Has this fucker even heard of Nashville, otherwise known as MUSIC CITY????

okay, i’m calm now.

My point is, this is the bullshit that permeates the city. If the core of the city is wrotten, ignore it.  If something is wrong, sweep it under the rug.

This isn’t the city that care forgot.   This is the city who forgot to care.  The city who only cares about themselves.  The city that forgot Southern pride and hospitality that still exists in many cities south of the Mason-Dixon.

Or better yet, it’s the city that just doesn’t give a fuck about anything or anyone.

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