In response to the UL administration’s plans to remove six live oak trees from campus to make way for new construction and renovations to existing buildings — detailed in Wednesday’s Independent Weekly article “Paving Paradise” — a campus environmental group has started an online petition and the Louisiana Garden Club is urging its members to get involved.
The online petition was begun by members of the Society for Peace, Environment, Action, and Knowledge, who are aiming for 1,000 signatures. The group is also hosting a meeting Friday on campus that will include a “tree appreciation walk” led by Jim Foret, an instructor with the university’s renewable resources department and son of the late J.A. Foret, the former Agriculture Department dean who planted many of UL’s now-stately oaks decades ago.
In a comment posted on the online version of “Paving Paradise,” SPEAK member Felicita Wilhelm writes:
These oaks are a part of our culture and our heritage and are a blessing to our campus community as well as the surrounding community. We understand the intent of the administration is to bring a new sense of life to our campus with these buildings, and we are in full support of this goal. Despite this, we hope to encourage a dialogue between the undersigned and our administration in an effort to alter the current plans in favor of saving the lives of these beautiful trees that our community is so lucky to have.
The Louisiana Garden Club Federation is also asking its members to contact UL President Joe Savoie concerning the oaks. In an email obtained by The Ind, LGCF President Donna Bucci urges members to “ask that ALL avenues are explored before deciding on destroying these magnificent trees. These trees are a trademark of the campus and speak volumes of its history — they cannot be replaced!”
[Editor’s note: In the interest of community dialogue, we ask that comments concerning the planned removal of the oaks from the UL campus be posted to the original story.]
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OCT 31 The National Journal posts another story from its visit to NOLA, this one about the struggling Vietnamese shrimpers in the area. The publication has been looking at how the state is recovering from Katrina, nine years later.
OCT 31 The New York Times posts this look at Louisiana politics, and how national issues are forcing out the old-time local politicking. Of course they mention EWE, aptly described as an old-time politician known for "charming one half of the state and mortifying the other."
OCT 31 Here's an AP story on the ABC site about Louisiana's chicken little response to an international medical conference planned in NOLA this weekend. Organizers (who are actual physicians, as opposed to the hand-wringing state officials who issued the edicts) say the orders are "unfortunate" given that a main focus of the meeting was Ebola.
OCT 31 Given the things Bobby Jindal has said and done since he's been governor, it's a pretty safe bet he thinks we're a bunch of dummies. Apparently, he's sure President Obama is one, too. This story on Huff Post quotes Jindal as saying the president - a graduate of Harvard Law - should sue to get his money back. (What should a Brown biology grad who doesn't believe in evolution do?)
OCT 31 Us old folks are used to a two-party system, although most of us aren't sold on its success. But what if that system wasn't in place; what if politics reflected the true level of diversity among voters? That's what an LSU student is dreaming of in this editorial. He sees the two parties' control of our politics as limiting.
OCT 31 And you thought the Senate race was dirty. This post on the Forward Now blog tells the story of a Shreveport mayoral campaign worker who was paid to "infiltrate" and "sabotage" an opponent's campaign. Karma's a beeotch, though, because turns out the guy really liked the "enemy," and now he's supporting her. For real.
OCT 30 The National Journal offers this analysis of Bobby Jindal's willingness to stump in any Senate campaign that's not in Louisiana. Why is that? The Journal asks some GOPers and finds that the answer is one we already know: he's so unpopular here, because he's been so busy running for President, that his support might be "toxic."
OCT 30 Blogger Tom Aswell is still all over the OGB mess - and all by himself, apparently. In this post, he's revealing orders from the Jindal administration to destroy records from the state employee health insurance plan. Those orders (he's heard) have angered the Secretary of State and caused an administration lawyer to quit her job. Wow!
OCT 30 A NOLA lady has alleged she was drugged and raped at a Bywater club that had a clothing-optional policy until recently, and she's now become the victim of a smear campaign, columnist Jarvis DeBerry writes in this post. She chose to reveal her story and her name, and she's being punished for that now, he says.
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