Monday, January 16, 2006

Ready, shoot, aim

What the fuck! Right on the heels of a post I wrote this morning suggesting that we need an honest discussion about the race issue before New Orleans can be rebuilt, Mayor Nagin said God wants New Orleans to be "chocolate."

Can we just have another mayor?

At first, I thought, what a bizarre thing to say. I know Nagin isn't the most articulate guy, and he has a tendency to put his foot in his mouth, but a "chocolate New Orleans"? What's more, he made a coded reference against Uptown whites, using an extremely inflammatory tone of voice.

Hey fucker! Are you inciting a race war? Think about it, asshole! Think before you speak! Or you'll turn even moderate whites and blacks into conflict.

Blacks should be just as angry as whites that any political leader should so flippantly conjure such divisive language. Imagine the reaction to a white leader saying that God wants New Orleans to be white!

Here's what Nagin said:

We as black people. It's time. It's time for us to come together. It's time for us to rebuild a New Orleans -- the one that should be a chocolate New Orleans. And I don't care what people are saying Uptown, or where ever they are. This city will be chocolate at the end of the day. This city will be a majority African-American city. It's the way God wants it to be. You can't have New Orleans no other way. It wouldn't be New Orleans.

Here's the WDSU video, and here's the link to the actual video file if you prefer.

Did Nagin intend to speak against me, a white Uptown New Orleanian? I didn't choose my race, and I live where it's always been most convenient for me to live to go to school. Is he not my mayor as much as he is the mayor of black citizens?

I think few people would argue that the majority black population of New Orleans has a right to return, and everyone wants and hopes that they will return.

Nagin later explained to WDSU what he meant:
How do you make chocolate. You take dark chocolate, you mix it with milk, and it becomes a delicious drink.

Yeah ... whatever.

Speaking of WDSU -- news for children -- they did a call-in survey asking people if they supported Nagin's remarks. Guess what? 94 percent of those who responded said they didn't support his remarks. Well, you might say that's as it should be, but what's the racial composition of New Orleans right now? Wouldn't it be good to ask that first so you know who's responding? Hardly a scientific result.

Unfortunately, Nagin made his racist remark about a chocolate city in the middle of a pretty good speech in which he called on the black community to get to work solving its own problems -- as Martin Luther King implored -- and made a very strong statement calling for an end to black-on-black violence, like the very disturbing shooting at a second-line parade on Sunday.

Parade shooting? We ought to let the community do justice on those assholes.

It's starting to look like the bad old New Orleans again. This shit has got to get under control. We can't let this happen.

Furthermore Ray-Ray, be careful when you bring God into any discussion, and certainly don't suggest that Hurricanes Katrina and Rita were God's punishment to New Orleans:
Surely God is mad at America. He sent us hurricane after hurricane after hurricane, and it's destroyed and put stress on this country.

Like the mayor said, it's time! It's time for us to come together, black and white, and get some new leadership!

Finally, a photo -- is a black MLK armband really an appropriate symbol? It looks a little fascist:


At 1/17/2006 04:41:00 AM, Blogger Mr. Clio said...

It's almost comical to have a caramel/cafe au lait/white chocolate mayor talking about how God wants a chocolate city.

Nagin's lost it. He really has.

How does he know what God wants, anyway? I pray regularly, and I still have no clue what God wants for this city or much else. Even if I did, I wouldn't be certain enough to be giving public speeches about it.

What bugs me the most is how justified much of quasi-racist white metro New Orleans is feeling today. Now we've got racist whites and racist blacks reinforcing each other.

At 1/17/2006 04:48:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wrote a post about him this morning. The man has lost it. He has more in common with Pat Robertson than I thought could ever happen.


At 1/17/2006 07:58:00 PM, Blogger bayoustjohndavid said...

I agree mixter, my last (or second to last)post brought up the Pat Robertson point. But, Mr. Clio, I think that's it's being too kind to say he's losing it. He wasn't speaking off the cuff, that was a prepared speech. It was cynical political move that hurt the city, but may or may not have hurt him.


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