Saving Your City Is Terrorism
The city can rebuild, grow and retain its inimitable charm … Our lazy “that’s the way we’ve always done it” mentality needs to be buried along with the moldy Sheet-rock. That debilitating philosophy never worked and never will.
Recently, some outrageous stunts border on terrorism. The public housing situation is sad, but threatening to “run off” tourists if the complexes aren’t immediately reopened is not the answer. It is sad that a church in the lower Garden District burned down, but standing in front of the wrecking ball is not the answer. After this city burned years ago, it was rebuilt, and I’m certain many of our French ancestors were infuriated at the Spanish architectural reconstruction, but today it is what we cherish and protect. I’m sure some people on Fifth Avenue protested the building of the modern Guggenheim museum, but years later the Frank Lloyd Wright structure is a beloved landmark. I find it ridiculous and appalling that anyone would oppose a desperately needed grocery on the blighted eyesore corner of Claiborne and Carrollton avenues.
… We can rebuild, but takes the willingness to see beyond today, adapt, compromise and grow — or else die like the dinosaurs. Of course keep and protect the historic; that is what defines us and makes us unique.
All New Orleans has is its history. Condos and box stores, built in an architecture style at odds with this city (i.e. none), will only kill us in the long run. Also, none of the people who oppose wrecking a church in its entirety or building a Walgreen’s far away from the street are against rebuilding and growth. We want growth but that which respects and maintains our city’s uniqueness.
How do we “keep and protect the historic that is what defines us and makes us unique” without opposing complete demolition or a chain store that plans to build with no respect for the historic? This essay is what is known as a contradiction in terms that sucks up to all involved parties. As Karen says, “Get your facts straight.”
It is insulting on Batt’s part to suggest that the laziness on our part keeps New Orleans from flourishing. Quite the opposite. It takes bravery and vigor to stand in front of a wrecking ball to save a small portion of the Coliseum Place Baptist Church for posterity, while it is laziness of thought to demolish it all leaving nothing for the city and everything for feckless developers. Terrorism is the city’s building inspector towering over and giving a menacing look to our city councilperson and neighborhood association board for trying to delay the demolition until we had more concrete answers. As for the Walgreen’s on Carrollton and Claiborne, no one opposes it; the citizens of that area merely ask that zoning laws are followed and that the store is pedestrian-friendly.
Nice way to twist the situation to your (or your brother’s political sour-grapes) advantage.
Stay in New York, Mr. Batt, and don’t write about things of which you are no longer a part.