Channeling his inner preacher, City-Parish Councilman Kenneth Boudreaux, adorned during the start of Tuesday's council meeting in a hooded sweatshirt in recognition of the Trayvon Martin shooting case in Florida, offered an inspired defense of his attire and called on Lafayette to work beyond its racial grudges.
“I’ve always said Lafayette is good, and Lafayette would never become great until we could take down the divisions and the walls that exist, where people could start living and functioning together in one accord,” the District 4 councilman said, his voice rising with his emotions. “... any type of profiling is wrong by anyone at any time.”
Both Boudreaux and his fellow inner-city rep, District 3's Brandon Shelvin, wore the attire during the first few minutes of the council meeting. Shelvin echoed Boudreaux’s encyclical on racial tolerance in a more measured but equally incisive address.
Boudreaux told The Ind earlier in the day when we called to confirm that he planned to wear a hoodie to the meeting that he wasn’t making a political statement. Rather, he said, it was intended as a reminder that members of Lafayette’s many Neighborhood Watch groups must practice restraint.
But at Tuesday night’s meeting, the councilman’s sense of outrage over the Martin case was palpable, and he called out those who frowned on his and Shelvin’s fashion-forward statement: “There were those who were critical and said it is inappropriate for a council member to wear a hoodie at a council meeting,” Boudreaux said. “But yet when the Saints were winning and all nine council members put on a Saints shirt, I didn’t hear a word.
“I wear pink ties during cancer awareness. I wear purple ties on Domestic Violence [Awareness Week]. I don’t see where all of a sudden bringing attention to a significant issue that needs to have some clarity and some understanding and some sensitivity has become something wrong. I wore a fire department hat when America was under attack.”
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DEC 6 Here we are, at the top of another bad list: this time, Louisiana has the (dubious) honor of beating out all other states when it comes to gutting higher ed funding, this Picayune story reports. The American Association of Colleges and Universities says our cuts (nearly 18 percent this year alone) are the highest in the nation. Three-fourths of the states increased funding last year, with the top spender increasing funding by 28 percent. This is a great legacy for our governor, right?
DEC 6 Blogger Lamar White Jr. takes a look at the creepy effort over in Baton Rouge, wherein the southern, lily-white area of the city wants to secede from the union, er, create its own "city" and take all the really fat sales tax cows with it. Turns out the group campaigning for the move is a for-profit corporation, and Lamar says that means its effort won't pass legal muster.
DEC 6 Blogger Tom Aswell tells us about some fishiness he found in the state worker's comp office. There's some confusion about when one guy started working there, and there's also some involvement by a GOP lege from Hammond. It's all just another example of the Jindal administration's actions that "defy explanation," Aswell says.
DEC 6 Edwin Edwards may think it's possible he will be governor again, but columnist James Gill isn't so sure. Edwards would have to get a presidential pardon to run for governor -- unless he wants to wait until he's 99, Gill says. But even Edwards' many supporters should probably hope he doesn't get that, because there's no real chance he can win, Gill says.
DEC 6 Here's an interesting post on DIG Magazine for football history buffs. It's about the Pelican Bowl, the Bayou Classic and the history of black college football. It's a trip down memory lane and the story of a "mythical black college national crown." What killed it? Trying to compete with the Bayou Classic.
DEC 6 Nelson Mandela became famous while sitting in prison, where he was a symbol of apartheid. But his enduring legacy was his ability to forgive, to reach out a hand of peace to heal his country of division and oppression, and the Picayune talks about this aspect of his personality. The story also reminds us of the more light-hearted moments Louisiana shared with the former President of South Africa.
DEC 6 We've all been passed by a nut on the highway and assumed the driver was on drugs. Maybe that's not hyperbole: here's a story from the Picayune about a guy riding around with a meth lab in his back seat. One wonders if his insurance policy included coverage for random explosions.
DEC 6 Here's a new blog in the NOLA Defender; it's called Shift Change, and it's all about cocktails. This installment by Rhiannon Enlil focuses on the sazerac, the enigmatic cocktail made with absinthe. But Enlil also introduces herself, a long-time NOLA bartender who has "a lot of booze" in her house.
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