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> New Orleans - "The Chocolate City"?, Is Nagin Protracting Racial Division?
Titus
post Jan 17 2006, 02:08 AM
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New Orleans will be a "chocolate" city again, says Ray Nagin

At a MLK function today, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin commented on the future of New Orleans.

QUOTE
"It's time for us to come together. It's time for us to rebuild New Orleans - the one that should be a chocolate New Orleans," the mayor said. "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."


Now, obviously N.O. was predominantly black before Hurricane Katrina.

Yet, Is Mayor Nagin helping to widen the divide between Whites and Blacks within New Orleans with his comments?
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Bikerdad
post Jan 17 2006, 03:56 AM
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QUOTE(Titus @ Jan 16 2006, 09:08 PM)
New Orleans will be a "chocolate" city again, says Ray Nagin

At a MLK function today, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin commented on the future of New Orleans.

QUOTE
"It's time for us to come together. It's time for us to rebuild New Orleans - the one that should be a chocolate New Orleans," the mayor said. "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."


Now, obviously N.O. was predominantly black before Hurricane Katrina.

Yet, Is Mayor Nagin helping to widen the divide between Whites and Blacks within New Orleans with his comments?
*




Yup, he is, but between the media's misreporting and yellow journalism regarding Hurricane Katrina, as well as the statements of other black moonbats (Belafonte, Farrakhan, Kanye) in recent months, I don't think he'll actually do much damage unless the "Black Establishment" rallies vigourously to his defense. As an aside, it certainly won't help New Orleans' image...

Don't forget this:

As we think about rebuilding 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. Surely he’s not approval (sic) of us being in Iraq under false pretenses. But surely he is upset at black America also.” - Ray Nagin


Will "the Usual Suspects" who squawked over Pat Robertson's observation regarding Sharon and Falwell's observation regarding 9/11 grab their rhetorical pitchforks, bust down the faggots **, light 'em and angrily mob forth to slay the horrid evil theocratic monster, or will Nagin get yet another pass?

Grace and peace, BD

** fag·ot also fag·got ( P ) Pronunciation Key (fgt)
n.
A bundle of twigs, sticks, or branches bound together.

Middle English, from Old French, from Old Provençal, possibly from Vulgar Latin *facus, from Greek phakelos, bundle.
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blingice
post Jan 17 2006, 07:15 AM
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QUOTE(Titus @ Jan 16 2006, 08:08 PM)

Yet, Is Mayor Nagin helping to widen the divide between Whites and Blacks within New Orleans with his comments?
*



Yes.

Ugh, this is another case of a racial double standard that will be allowed by liberals, and conservative's yells will fall upon deaf ears. Nagin sounds like he is suggesting something like Hitler's "Final Solution", but he's not advocating killing whites to have a mostly-black N.O. ... yet. If he didn't get his way of a mostly-black N.O., he would rely on coercion to get whites out of the city, and I do in fact believe that if there was a KKK equivalent for black people, Nagin would be in it.

He perpetuates racism, and liberals don't understand it, and it wrecks America.

I think whites now need an MLK.
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Lesly
post Jan 17 2006, 03:15 PM
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What the hell is a chocolate New Orleans?

QUOTE(Nagin)
How do you make chocolate? You take dark chocolate, you mix it with white milk, and it becomes a delicious drink. That is the chocolate I am talking about.

Please tell me this statement is another example of whites misinterpreting idiosyncratic forms of expressions like Tyler Perry’s Madea stage playwrights?

Is Mayor Nagin helping to widen the divide between Whites and Blacks within New Orleans with his comments?

I’d say so, to keep his leadership post. I don’t want NO to come back bigger and badder as … a tame gated community resort, but pandering to race? Come on. His inarticulateness and demagoguery invites that unfortunate outcome.

QUOTE(Bikerdad @ Jan 16 2006, 10:56 PM)
Will "the Usual Suspects" who squawked over Pat Robertson's observation regarding Sharon and Falwell's observation regarding 9/11 grab their rhetorical pitchforks, bust down the faggots **, light 'em and angrily mob forth to slay the horrid evil theocratic monster [snip]
*

Did you have a change of heart concerning sectarian prayer before opening legislative sessions, BD? Welcome to the club!

This post has been edited by Lesly: Jan 17 2006, 03:42 PM
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aevans176
post Jan 17 2006, 03:39 PM
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QUOTE(Titus @ Jan 16 2006, 08:08 PM)
Yet, Is Mayor Nagin helping to widen the divide between Whites and Blacks within New Orleans with his comments?
*



Being a Louisiana Native, I can understand what the mayor is saying. Simply put, the NO communities that were predominantly black are under water, and the people coming back are not black.

There are a large number of apprehensions in the existing New Orleans communities that the demographics of the city will change, based on simple socio-economics. It would be very difficult for economically disadvantaged people to make it back to New Orleans and start over. There aren't places to live, jobs to take, and opportunities for growth in New Orleans.

The problem with the Mayor's statements is that it placates a generally divisive black mentality that it's socially acceptable to make blatently racist remarks on the national stage. If any other race of person made a similar remark (outside of a comedy club) it would be lambasted as something awful and terribly biggoted.

I think that the Mayor's actions are less a product of his prejudice than a product of societal acceptance of such remarks...
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Julian
post Jan 17 2006, 04:13 PM
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QUOTE(Titus @ Jan 17 2006, 03:08 AM)
New Orleans will be a "chocolate" city again, says Ray Nagin

At a MLK function today, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin commented on the future of New Orleans.

QUOTE
"It's time for us to come together. It's time for us to rebuild New Orleans - the one that should be a chocolate New Orleans," the mayor said. "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."


Now, obviously N.O. was predominantly black before Hurricane Katrina.

Yet, Is Mayor Nagin helping to widen the divide between Whites and Blacks within New Orleans with his comments?
*



I doubt he's doing it intentionally, but yes, it certainly looks that way.

Unlike most other posters so far, the statement that made my jaw drop wasn't the chocolate stuff (which sounds to me just like another hippy-dippy "coffee-coloured people" sentiment) but the "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."

HUH??

I get the bit about "You can't have New Orleans no other way. It wouldn't be New Orleans." If for no other reason than that he's an elected politician, and white America doesn't have a long and noble history of electing black politicians like Nagin (or any other kind). He wants to keep his job - not very noble, perhaps, but understandable self-interest.

But "It's the way God wants it to be.

double- HUH????

Where does that come from??

Is New Orleans mentioned in the Bible? Maybe in the Second Letter of St Paul to the Louisianans?

Are African Americans? "Blessed are the dark-skinned, for they shall give the qualities of cacao-based confectionery to the places in which they live"??

Or does he just have an unusual phone set up in his office, like some kind of born-again Commissioner Gordon? "Mr Mayor - it's the GodPhone!"

Is there no end to the assumptions of public gullible religiosity by US politicians? Do they really think their electorates are so simple-minded that the merest mention of God gives whatever they say - no matter how stupid - the ring of truth? Does it work? If it does, are Americans REALLY that simple-minded? rolleyes.gif
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Bikerdad
post Jan 17 2006, 04:39 PM
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QUOTE(Lesly @ Jan 17 2006, 10:15 AM)
What the hell is a chocolate New Orleans?

QUOTE(Nagin)
How do you make chocolate? You take dark chocolate, you mix it with white milk, and it becomes a delicious drink. That is the chocolate I am talking about.

Please tell me this statement is another example of whites misinterpreting idiosyncratic forms of expressions like Tyler Perry’s Madea stage playwrights?


No, I don't think so, given Nagin's race-based (i.e., racist) rhetoric in the past. If it were Nagin's intent to call for a revitalized color-blind city, he could have simply called for a majority American city, one that benefits from a rainbow of colors, multicultural blah blah blah...

Nope, he didn't, and he directly linked "chocolate" with "majority African-American."

Gotta give him points for nifty footwork though, "chocolate milk." Priceless. shifty.gif hmmm.gif Hasn't the multicultural Left pilloried Thomas Jefferson for allegedly mixin' chocolate? hmmm.gif

QUOTE
QUOTE(Bikerdad @ Jan 16 2006, 10:56 PM)
Will "the Usual Suspects" who squawked over Pat Robertson's observation regarding Sharon and Falwell's observation regarding 9/11 grab their rhetorical pitchforks, bust down the faggots **, light 'em and angrily mob forth to slay the horrid evil theocratic monster [snip]
*

Did you have a change of heart concerning sectarian prayer before opening legislative sessions, BD? Welcome to the club!
*


No, why would I have a change of heart? If my mocking hyperbole has set such hopes aflutter, I apologize. flowers.gif


QUOTE(Julian)
Is there no end to the assumptions of public gullible religiosity by US politicians? Do they really think their electorates are so simple-minded that the merest mention of God gives whatever they say - no matter how stupid - the ring of truth? Does it work? If it does, are Americans REALLY that simple-minded?
No, it doesn't work. I will point out though that Americans on the whole are also not so simple-minded as to reject outright anything that has God overtones...

BTW, Nagin got rid of his Godphone and got himself a cellphone from Wal-Mart. He didna want the NSA listening in... innocent.gif innocent.gif
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nighttimer
post Jan 17 2006, 05:31 PM
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QUOTE(Titus @ Jan 16 2006, 09:08 PM)
Is Mayor Nagin helping to widen the divide between Whites and Blacks within New Orleans with his comments?


In a word: no.

How is Mayor Nagin stating his desire to keep a city that was predominantly African-American predominantly African-American in the future "widening the divide between Whites and Blacks?"

Nagin has no desire to see New Orleans rebuilt as a combination of a tacky tourist trap and a gentrified playground of housing projects, upscale stores and loft apartments priced outside of the incomes of Black working class citizens. Neither do I. But there are plans on the table that would do exactly that. Cherry-picking what parts of New Orleans are "viable" based upon on racial economics is widening the divide between Whites and Blacks in NOLA far more than the mayor's remarks.

I'm also sure the allusion to a "chocolate New Orleans" is based in part on the phrase "chocolate city and its vanilla suburbs" from the Parliament song, "Chocolate City."

Other "chocolate cities" surrounded by "vanilla suburbs" would include Detroit, Atlanta and Cleveland.

Stating a city is predominantly Black isn't racism. That's just demographics.

dry.gif

This post has been edited by nighttimer: Jan 17 2006, 05:33 PM
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Cube Jockey
post Jan 17 2006, 05:40 PM
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QUOTE(Julian @ Jan 17 2006, 08:13 AM)
Unlike most other posters so far, the statement that made my jaw drop wasn't the chocolate stuff (which sounds to me just like another hippy-dippy "coffee-coloured people" sentiment) but the "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."
*


I think what he is trying to say, poorly, is that New Orleans was great because of the predominant black culture there. In order to really understand this you really have to have visited and known New Orleans before Katrina.

He's talking about things like the rich history of Jazz and music, the food, the culture, etc but I suppose it would have been better if he said that instead of what he said.

I also feel that he is concerned that when New Orleans is rebuilt it is going to be the land of pricey condos and not the city that it once was. This is a legitimate concern I just hope for the sake of the city it isn't as bad as some believe.

So in short, what we have here is a public official that isn't really all that great at expressing his ideas. I knew what he meant when he said that because I know the city, but I can understand and appreciate that other people wouldn't take it the same way.
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Lesly
post Jan 17 2006, 05:49 PM
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QUOTE(nighttimer @ Jan 17 2006, 12:31 PM)
Nagin has no desire to see New Orleans rebuilt as a combination of a tacky tourist trap and a gentrified playground of housing projects, upscale stores and loft apartments priced outside of the incomes of Black working class citizens.  Neither do I.  But there are plans on the table that would do exactly that.  Cherry-picking what parts of New Orleans are "viable" based upon on racial economics is widening the divide between Whites and Blacks in NOLA far more than the mayor's remarks.

I'm also sure the allusion to a "chocolate New Orleans" is based in part on the phrase "chocolate city and its vanilla suburbs" from the Parliament song, "Chocolate City."
*

I understand this part. I don’t even question his desire to keep the New Orlean's culture and private homes intact, if it’s possible. But…

QUOTE(nighttimer @ Jan 17 2006, 12:31 PM)
Other "chocolate cities" surrounded by "vanilla suburbs" would include Detroit, Atlanta and Cleveland.
*

NT, if it was a white politician stating he wanted to keep a white city predominantly white after a natural disaster, would you frown and think “business as usual?”
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Julian
post Jan 17 2006, 05:54 PM
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QUOTE(Bikerdad @ Jan 17 2006, 05:39 PM)
QUOTE(Julian)
Is there no end to the assumptions of public gullible religiosity by US politicians? Do they really think their electorates are so simple-minded that the merest mention of God gives whatever they say - no matter how stupid - the ring of truth? Does it work? If it does, are Americans REALLY that simple-minded?
No, it doesn't work. I will point out though that Americans on the whole are also not so simple-minded as to reject outright anything that has God overtones...

BTW, Nagin got rid of his Godphone and got himself a cellphone from Wal-Mart. He didna want the NSA listening in... innocent.gif innocent.gif
*



Fair enough. Where citing God's will has some sort of foundation in scripture, I can see how it need not be rejected out of hand (if one sets store by such things). Where is clearly has bugger all to do with it, as here, I bet we can agree it ought to be rejected out of hand.

Cube & nighttimer

QUOTE(CubeJockey)
So in short, what we have here is a public official that isn't really all that great at expressing his ideas. I knew what he meant when he said that because I know the city, but I can understand and appreciate that other people wouldn't take it the same way.


QUOTE(nighttimer)
I'm also sure the allusion to a "chocolate New Orleans" is based in part on the phrase "chocolate city and its vanilla suburbs" from the Parliament song, "Chocolate City."


Ah, now it makes much more sense. To be honest, I suspected that his comments might have been just clumsy, or intended for a narrow subset of his wide audience, rather than intentionally divisive. And, as I said, it wasn't really the sentiment or the chocolate references that raised by eyebrows. No, it was my eyebrow-raising muscles involuntarily contracting when I read the bit about God having an opinion one way or the other on the racial make-up of American cities.

So it seems to be just abit bit of clumsy phraseology.

What a surprise for a leading US politician to have trouble with his words....

**cough** "new-kew-lar weapons", anyone? **cough** whistling.gif
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Paladin Elspeth
post Jan 17 2006, 05:55 PM
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Is Mayor Nagin helping to widen the divide between Whites and Blacks within New Orleans with his comments?

I found the "chocolate" statement just weird. I dismiss Nagin's assertion that the hurricanes were because "God is mad" as I did Pat Robertson's remarks (although I do personally think that God doesn't like the Iraq war). That kind of rhetoric is a device used to keep fearful people in line. The only difference is, I would assert, that clergymen claim that they speak for God at least slightly more often than politicians do, especially those with an international network audience.

I do think that the chocolate city remark does serve to polarize, rather than express the commonality of the suffering that those who lived and worked in the New Orleans area have experienced, the dark chocolate plus white milk explanation notwithstanding.

(Would it be possible for some of our conservative posters not to assume that all liberals are "moonbats" even as not all conservatives are "wingnuts"? I wonder. It's getting tedious when the assumption is made that all liberals are anti-God as well.)

This post has been edited by Paladin Elspeth: Jan 17 2006, 07:17 PM
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nighttimer
post Jan 17 2006, 07:12 PM
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QUOTE(Lesly @ Jan 17 2006, 12:49 PM)
NT, if it was a white politician stating he wanted to keep a white city predominantly white after a natural disaster, would you frown and think “business as usual?”


Maybe if it was a public official in Simi Valley, Orange County, Hyannis Port or other enclaves where Caucasians frolic and kick back, but I take your point, Lesly.

If Mayor Nagin is guilty of anything it's allowing his mouth to outrace his brain. But speaking in politically incorrect terms is not always the same thing as being a flaming bigot.

unsure.gif

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Hobbes
post Jan 17 2006, 09:24 PM
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QUOTE(nighttimer @ Jan 17 2006, 12:31 PM)
QUOTE(Titus @ Jan 16 2006, 09:08 PM)
Is Mayor Nagin helping to widen the divide between Whites and Blacks within New Orleans with his comments?


In a word: no.

How is Mayor Nagin stating his desire to keep a city that was predominantly African-American predominantly African-American in the future "widening the divide between Whites and Blacks?"


Come on, Nighttimer. What do you think would happen if a mayor of a predominantly white city that had to be rebuilt stated that he wanted it to remain a predominantly white city? The hue and outcry would be beyond deafening. Yet, suddenly now this is ok?

I state this although I personally have nothing against the remarks themselves. I think I understand why he said it. However, in the analogy above, the mayor of the white city might also have had good intentions and reasoning behind his statements. That doesn't change the fact that none of that would matter, only the racism inherent in the statement would be focused on. So, my concern is much bigger than Nagin's comments themselves. Racism is racism, and racist remarks are racist remarks. You can't pick and choose....either we should decry such statements, or we should allow them. There shouldn't be different rules depending on which side of the color spectrum you fall on. All that does is perpetuate the phenomenon.
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Cube Jockey
post Jan 17 2006, 11:34 PM
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QUOTE(Hobbes @ Jan 17 2006, 01:24 PM)
So, my concern is much bigger than Nagin's comments themselves.  Racism is racism, and racist remarks are racist remarks.  You can't pick and choose....either we should decry such statements, or we should allow them.  There shouldn't be different rules depending on which side of the color spectrum you fall on.  All that does is perpetuate the phenomenon.
*


Unless of course you don't believe the comments are racist in the first place. As I explained above, Nagin could have used better words but it is pretty clear what he meant by his remarks to anyone that knows even the smallest thing about New Orleans or has visited at one point. The meaning behind them was not racist and all of this is much ado about nothing in my opinion.

The only way that can really be refuted is if you doubt the facts here:
1. New Orleans is a unique American city because of the predominantly black culture there that has made great contributions to our society. Without things like jazz, the food, etc it wouldn't be any different than any other city in the South.
2. If New Orleans is rebuilt as a bunch of high priced condos with touristy boutiques then it will never be the same again.

I really don't see those facts as debatable.
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lederuvdapac
post Jan 17 2006, 11:48 PM
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QUOTE(Cube Jockey @ Jan 17 2006, 06:34 PM)
QUOTE(Hobbes @ Jan 17 2006, 01:24 PM)
So, my concern is much bigger than Nagin's comments themselves.  Racism is racism, and racist remarks are racist remarks.  You can't pick and choose....either we should decry such statements, or we should allow them.  There shouldn't be different rules depending on which side of the color spectrum you fall on.  All that does is perpetuate the phenomenon.
*


Unless of course you don't believe the comments are racist in the first place. As I explained above, Nagin could have used better words but it is pretty clear what he meant by his remarks to anyone that knows even the smallest thing about New Orleans or has visited at one point. The meaning behind them was not racist and all of this is much ado about nothing in my opinion.

The only way that can really be refuted is if you doubt the facts here:
1. New Orleans is a unique American city because of the predominantly black culture there that has made great contributions to our society. Without things like jazz, the food, etc it wouldn't be any different than any other city in the South.
2. If New Orleans is rebuilt as a bunch of high priced condos with touristy boutiques then it will never be the same again.

I really don't see those facts as debatable.
*




How about we give a slight hypothetical? Lets say Houston was the city that was wiped out by a hurricane since it is also in an area that is prone to hurricanes. Houston is approximately 50% white...and you are telling me that if the mayor of that city told his constituents "Don't worry, this city will be vanilla again" that THAT statement would not be deemed racist?

I am not decrying the words of the NO mayor, i am sure it was a slight slip of the tongue and he intended to make a more politically correct statement. I think his intentions were exactly as CJ described, it was just very wrong word usage.
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Cube Jockey
post Jan 17 2006, 11:54 PM
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QUOTE(lederuvdapac @ Jan 17 2006, 03:48 PM)
How about we give a slight hypothetical? Lets say Houston was the city that was wiped out by a hurricane since it is also in an area that is prone to hurricanes. Houston is approximately 50% white...and you are telling me that if the mayor of that city told his constituents "Don't worry, this city will be vanilla again" that THAT statement would not be deemed racist?
*


I'm sure it would be, and the people that claimed that would probably be right because context in this case matters. Houston is a lot different than New Orleans. You can pick any city on the map Leder, there isn't any place like New Orleans and it is the way it is for very specific reasons.
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post Jan 18 2006, 12:24 AM
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QUOTE(Cube Jockey)
The only way that can really be refuted is if you doubt the facts here:
1. New Orleans is a unique American city because of the predominantly black culture there that has made great contributions to our society. Without things like jazz, the food, etc it wouldn't be any different than any other city in the South.
Aren't ALL cities unique? What makes New Orleans so much more 'unique' than, say, Detroit.

I've never been to Detroit, but I'm informed it has a high population of 'chocolate people'. How has that helped the city become unique?

The notion that one ethnic group of people in the USA are solely responsible for the culture of a city is absurd. No matter how you cut it, Nagin's comment is clearly racist.


QUOTE(Cube Jockey)
2. If New Orleans is rebuilt as a bunch of high priced condos with touristy boutiques then it will never be the same again.

I really don't see those facts as debatable.
Then why are you debatting?

I don't see the validity of this second. No matter what you do New Orleans will never be the same, regardless. What once was, has been lost forever.

What replaces New Orleans might very well be equally special, but how does a high proportion of 'chocolate people' as opposed to 'Vanilla', 'banana' or 'strawberry' people guarantee anything at all?

You might just as equally argue that it was poverty that made New Orleans what it was before Katrina and what the city now needs in order to get its old character back is a nice fat load of poor people again.

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Cube Jockey
post Jan 18 2006, 12:38 AM
Post #19


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QUOTE(moif @ Jan 17 2006, 04:24 PM)
Aren't ALL cities unique? What makes New Orleans so much more 'unique' than, say, Detroit.
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No, all cities aren't unique in my opinion, some are very forgettable. I'm afraid that I really won't be able to do a good job of explaining the cultural importance of New Orleans to someone who has never experienced it. But needless to say, it has been a very important part of American culture, that is what makes it unique. If you want to read a little about it I'd suggest starting with this Wikipedia article.

QUOTE(moif)
The notion that one ethnic group of people in the USA are solely responsible for the culture of a city is absurd.

No it isn't absurd Moif. African Americans in New Orleans invented Jazz and they are responsible for the unique culture of the city which has left its mark on our culture over the past century.

QUOTE(moif)
Then why are you debatting?

I don't see the validity of this second. No matter what you do New Orleans will never be the same, regardless.

I'm debating because Nagin's comments are not racist, they are just ill-chosen words. And once again if you had knowledge of New Orleans you'd know that putting in a bunch of high priced condos for the rich and people with second homes would kill the culture of the city.
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moif
post Jan 18 2006, 12:55 AM
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Cube Jockey.

It may have escaped your attention but New Orleans is famous through out the planet. Its fame is far greater than the necessity of having experienced it first hand. I don't need to read about New Orleans on Wikipedia because I learned about it in school!

Also, inventing a style of music many decades ago does not solidify the culture of a city for perpetuity.
Nor does a style of music belong to any one city or group of people. Musical styles are not simply born from nothing, they are the products of evolving fusions.

But this is neither here nor there because New Orleans was always about more than just Jazz or 'Chocolate people'. The city had a history that was bigger than either of these and its culture and what made it unique come from ALL that history, not just the 'chocolate' bits or the Jazz bits.

All cities are unique, because no two cities are the same. Whether or not you or I find them interesting is utterly besides the point for you or I do not decide what is unique and who is not.

Detroit may be a dump for all I know, but they can still make music there... right?

In the case of New Orleans, just as in much of human history, the interesting musical culture sprang more from poverty than any other single cause so if you are going to argue against expensive condo's then you must be arguing for a return to poverty...

...and if you're arguing for the fading musical culture of an American city then you have to take into account where that musical culture came from (not just the colour of skin of most of the people involved) AND whether or not the culture will return just because 'chocolate people' do.


QUOTE
I'm debating because Nagin's comments are not racist, they are just ill-chosen words. And once again if you had knowledge of New Orleans you'd know that putting in a bunch of high priced condos for the rich and people with second homes would kill the culture of the city. 
Yeah?

Even if those condo's are occupied by 'chocolate people'?

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