UptownMessenger.com

Jan 192017
 

U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond delivers the keynote address at the NAACP New Orleans branch’s 2012 Freedom Fund Banquet at Xavier University. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Robert Morris)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Though recent polls (including one from the Wall Street Journal/NBC News) call President-Elect Donald Trump the most unpopular incoming President in decades, more than a thousand Louisiana residents including Fenn French, Louis Gurvich, Adrian Bruneau, Eric Skrmetta, Brian Trascher, Billy Nungesser, Jeff Landry, and State Republican Party Chair Roger Villere with granddaughter Madison are taking in all the Washington’s sights and sounds this week in preparation for the 45th Presidential Inauguration. Continue reading »

Jan 162017
 
An automated traffic-enforcement vehicle with a ticket on the windshield. (photo by Charles Schully, reprinted with permission)

An automated traffic-enforcement vehicle with a ticket on the windshield. (photo by Charles Schully, reprinted with permission)

Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

If aliens ever came down to Earth, they would quickly determine that the government of the city of New Orleans is at odds with its own citizens, working ceaselessly to render their lives more grueling and costly.

The latest escalation of this ongoing fracas consists of the use of 55 new speed cameras throughout the parish to close this year’s budget gap. If these additions were simply fixed cameras, they would have garnered less attention. Instead, motorists this week were greeted with a cavalcade of unmarked vehicles equipped with speed cameras parked along major streets. Continue reading »

Jan 122017
 
Kim Gandy of the National Network to End Domestic Violence (center) poses with Mariah Wineski of the  Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Judy Benitez also of NNEDV. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Kim Gandy of the National Network to End Domestic Violence (center) poses with Mariah Wineski of the Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Judy Benitez also of NNEDV. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Like thousands of women across the country, former New Orleanian Kim Gandy, President and CEO of the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV), is clearly concerned. Gandy fears that some of the Trump administration’s nominees for key cabinet posts “have historic positions that appear contrary to the rights and protections they will be charged to uphold.” It’s more important than ever, says Gandy, “for women’s voices to be heard and for women to be politically active in issues they care about.” Continue reading »

Jan 092017
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Victoria Coy, the executive director of the Louisiana Violence Reduction Coalition, went on a bit of a tear this past week over Louisiana’s so-called “Stand Your Ground” (SYG) law. In an opinion piece written for The Lens, Coy made claims that, if true, would indeed be quite disturbing:

  • Stand Your Ground was tacked on to Louisiana’s Justifiable Homicide rules in 2006, upending centuries of common-sense definitions of self-defense.”
  • Under the revamped rules, you no longer have the duty to retreat from a threat before using lethal force. You need only ‘perceive’ a threat in order to justify meeting force with force — even if you could easily escape that threat.”
  • Stand Your Ground has codified prejudice. . . . If black men are the scary ones, then why should they be afraid? It’s this exact logic that is not only encouraged, but required under the disastrous Stand Your Ground law.”

Continue reading »

Jan 052017
 

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Former Congressman Bob Livingston, now a Washington D.C.-based lobbyist, told talk show host Larry King on Tuesday night that President-Elect Donald Trump is making a good start on his pledge to “drain the swamp” in Washington. “President-elect Trump has hired some outstanding people and is headed in the right direction,” said Livingston. Continue reading »

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Dec 152016
 
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

This week’s announcement by State Rep. Helena Moreno that she is launching the new nonprofit, bipartisan Ignite Advocacy Network (igniteforchange.org) is the latest example of women tapping into the national discontent over a lack of equal opportunities and channeling those feelings into action. The election of Donald Trump is also inspiring liberal and conservative women around the country to consider a career in government. Continue reading »

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Dec 122016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Loyola University received more bad publicity this past week when it was accused of discriminating against one of their students on the basis of his profession. He was a cop.

It occurred this past Wednesday when Sergeant Josh Collins of the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office attended a class in “Law and Morality” dressed in SWAT fatigues. He’d been attending classes there in criminal justice for eight years and normally wore plainclothes but didn’t that day because he was too busy to change. He was also openly wearing his sidearm. Continue reading »

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Dec 082016
 
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Dear President-elect Trump,

Thank you for including Louisiana on your victory tour.

While the majority of Louisiana’s citizens cast their votes for you, the voters of New Orleans did not. We’re a little different because of our unique history and culture. Yet, we’ve got lots of needs we hope you will address. Continue reading »

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Dec 082016
 

merriment

dontgetmalled

 

The holiday season has arrived, and Magazine Street has all that you need for decorating, shopping, pampering and entertaining. From the CBD to Audubon Park, New Orleans’ historic Magazine Street offers six miles of shopping, dining, art, activities and entertainment for all ages!

This year, Merriment on Magazine runs from the day after Thanksgiving and Small Business Saturday through Christmas Eve and includes special activities for the season:

  • Santa’s coming to town for the FREE Santa photo booth for kids, pets or adults visiting Magazine Street! Continue reading »
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Dec 052016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Personally, I’ve never been one to armchair quarterback murder investigations or second-guess police when their actions could be described as “restrained.” I’m not a cop and I have no law enforcement training. My relevant expertise as an attorney is limited to simply whether police are operating within the law, and that’s a limited scope.

However, it is difficult not to look a little cock-eyed at the investigation into the killing of Joe McKnight down in Terrytown. Publicly-released information makes one wonder: Why hasn’t the perp been charged yet? Continue reading »

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Dec 012016
 
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Criminals are stalking the streets of America and killing innocent victims at unprecedented rates. “Police have to gain control of this tremendous crime wave that’s hitting the U.S.,” said President-Elect Donald Trump on “Meet The Press” recently. “Cities need strong police protection.”

There is no question that crime is out of control in New Orleans too. Yesterday’s four shootings with a two-hour period, including one fatality, brought the 2016 number of homicides to 164, equal to last year. Who knows how many homicides will take place in December? Continue reading »

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Nov 282016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

“It became necessary to destroy the town to save it.”

Vietnam War Correspondent Peter Arnett claimed to have overheard this quote from an unnamed American major regarding the shelling of of Bến Tre city in early 1968. Its veracity is questionable, and in any event, Bến Tre was largely rubble due to attacks from the north before US artillery began its assault to rout the Vietcong.

However, that dubious quote has lingered as a paradigmatic example of a peculiar brand of cognitive dissonance: the notion that you can intentionally eradicate something in the midst of preserving it. Obviously, you can’t have it both ways, but a similar idea has come to mind in the wake of the shooting on Bourbon Street this past weekend in which one person was killed and nine others were wounded. Continue reading »

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Nov 242016
 
Local musicians entertain Bayou Classic visitors in New Orleans. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Local musicians entertain Bayou Classic visitors in New Orleans. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Whether thrilled with the election of Donald Trump or still mourning Hillary Clinton’s dramatic loss, there is much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.

Since its founding in New England, Thanksgiving has always been a great American festival of domestic and moral influence that has brought citizens together around common goals and promoted our national spirit. Continue reading »

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Nov 222016
 

inspirenola-scores

InspireNOLA Charter Schools achieved impressive academic results for the 2015-2016 school year at all three of the schools that it operates, continuing its status as the highest performing open-admissions charter network in New Orleans and Louisiana.

InspireNOLA’s two foundation schools, Alice M. Harte Charter School and Edna Karr High School, both achieved A letter grades for the second year in a row. Alice Harte’s school performance score (SPS) rose to a 104.3, with 45% of students scoring mastery or advanced on state assessments – far surpassing the district and state averages of 27% and 33%, respectively. Continue reading »

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Nov 212016
 

By Dannielle Garcia, Loyola Student News Service

Kyle Huling, the vice president of Urban South, serves beers to a line of customers. On Friday Nov. 11, Urban South Brewery celebrated the expansion of their brewery after being in business for just 7 months (Photo by Dannielle Garcia).

Kyle Huling, the vice president of Urban South, serves beers to a line of customers. On Friday Nov. 11, Urban South Brewery celebrated the expansion of their brewery after being in business for just 7 months (Photo by Dannielle Garcia).

Before the prohibition era, New Orleans prided itself on being the “Beer Capitol of the South.” Now, with five breweries and more on the way, those days may be returning.

Urban South, open for only seven months, just celebrated its expansion. The brewery had a ribbon cutting ceremony for new tanks in their Tchoupitoulas Street home on Friday, Nov. 11. Continue reading »

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Nov 212016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

The owners of the erstwhile New Orleans Zephyrs have earned our gratitude. In the aftermath of the 2016 election, which pitted friends and family against each other, New Orleanians needed a common enemy – a foil so blatantly awful that it would distract from divisive partisan politics and give time to heal the wounds.

The “New Orleans Baby Cakes” will serve that role. Continue reading »

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Nov 172016
 
Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser speaks Monday at the kick-off of Tulane University's new ByWater Institute fellowship program. (photo by Paula Burch-Centano, courtesy of Tulane University)

Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser speaks Monday at the kick-off of Tulane University’s new ByWater Institute fellowship program. (photo by Paula Burch-Centano, courtesy of Tulane University)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Speaking Monday at the kick-off of Tulane University’s new ByWater Institute fellowship program, Lt. Governor Billy Nungessser said that President-Elect Donald Trump will create jobs and economic opportunities in Louisiana, especially in the oil and gas industry. “President Trump is going to be good for business in Louisiana,” said Nungesser. Continue reading »

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Nov 102016
 
The Broadmoor Arts and Wellness opened last year on the second floor of the former St. Matthias School. The centers purpose is to enhance the community and its memebers at every life stage by offering creative programs and providing wellness services.( Photo by Anthony Alongi, Loyola Student News Service)

The Broadmoor Arts and Wellness opened last year on the second floor of the former St. Matthias School. The centers purpose is to enhance the community and its memebers at every life stage by offering creative programs and providing wellness services.( Photo by Anthony Alongi, Loyola Student News Service)

By Anthony Alongi, Loyola Student News Service

The Broadmoor Arts and Wellness center opened its doors last year with the purpose of offering affordable developmental programs and activities to New Orleans residents. Continue reading »

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Oct 272016
 
City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell poses with a constituent during last week's National Night Out Against Crime events. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell poses with a constituent during last week’s National Night Out Against Crime events. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

“I am ready to lead this city,” proclaimed District B Councilmember LaToya Cantrell last Friday night. Though billed as a Halloween party at the French Quarter home of trial lawyer Darleen Jacobs, there was some pretty serious politicking going on as Cantrell announced she would seek “higher office” without specifying whether she will qualify for council at large or mayor. Continue reading »

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Oct 242016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Mayor Landrieu’s 2017 budget has been released, and true to form, Landrieu proposes to nickel and dime the citizens of New Orleans for scraps of revenue. In order to generate an additional $5 million, Landrieu plans to double the number of red light and speed cameras, adding a whopping 56 cameras around the city. Continue reading »

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