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Tuesday, 21 July 2015 12:29
Landrieu chats with Pope about global warming as New Orleans crime ignites
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Landrieu-re-elected-smallIt is more than ironic that while his city is in the midst of a major upsurge in crime, Mayor Mitch Landrieu is far away. As he discusses climate change and other issues with the Pope at the Vatican, New Orleans continues to suffer from an outbreak of violent crime. Last week, there was a shootout at the intersection of Basin and Bienville Streets, while, yesterday, the daily gun battle occurred in broad daylight at the corner of Canal Street and Claiborne Avenue, one of the most high profile intersections in New Orleans. In this case, a gunman used an AK-47 to randomly spray bullets on unsuspecting and innocent civilians. Along with this incident, there were shootings in other neighborhoods such as Algiers, St. Roch and New Orleans East. As a result, the murder rate in 2015 is much higher than in previous years and the city is on track to suffer from 200 murders, the highest rate since 2007.


The crime is so prevalent and the carnage so pervasive that the people of New Orleans have become desensitized. It is now commonplace to see a gun battle during the middle of the day in New Orleans. Sadly, political leaders, such as Mayor Landrieu have no response. Instead, Landrieu decides to take an expensive junket, at taxpayer expense, with his top aides to Rome. Of course, it is an honor to meet with the Pope, but it is the wrong trip and the wrong time.

The city has a financial crisis and cannot repair roads or fix street lights. It owes big money to multiple parties from firemen to long suffering plaintiffs. How can the Mayor justify going on this expensive trip when there are so many financial needs?

This globe-trotting also provides another opportunity for Landrieu to avoid dealing with his number one priority, public safety. In recent weeks, he has made confederate monuments a major issue, dividing the city and distracting the people of New Orleans from his massive deficiencies in fighting violent crime. No confederate statues are committing these murders, neither is global warming. The crimes are being committed by young thugs who are roaming the streets with reckless abandon. Our criminal justice system is broken, our police force is demoralized and under staffed and Mayor Landrieu wants to address anything other than these critical issues.

These outrageous tactics will continue as long as the public continues to express no outrage. Sadly, voters have not been demanding results from Landrieu. He was re-elected despite an abysmal record on public safety and it has been increasing ever since.

There is no end in sight to the real problems of New Orleans such as horrible streets, high crime, homelessness, and 52% unemployment among black males. These are issues that demand not only attention, but creative solutions. Instead, Mayor Landrieu is delivering nothing but empty rhetoric, and diversion tactics.

Hopefully, one day, the people of New Orleans will tire of being poorly served and continually insulted. Until then, we should expect more of the same from the politicians of New Orleans, especially Mayor Mitch Landrieu.  

Jeff Crouere

Jeff Crouere is a native of New Orleans, LA and he is the host of a Louisiana based program, “Ringside Politics,” which airs at 7:30 p.m. Fri. and 10:00 p.m. Sun. on WLAE-TV 32, a PBS station, and 7 till 11 a.m.weekdays on WGSO 990 AM in New Orleans and the Northshore. For more information, visit his web site at Ringside Politics.

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