Squandered Heritage Vintage

City Hall Crime March

A few folks have asked me to post what I said today at City Hall.

Thank you, the residents of New Orleans for being here today to deliver
our message of desperation and exasperation.

For the last year our Neighborhoods have been the model of civic
participation. We have made every effort to communicate with our City
Officials and work closely with the Police.

In spite of this Steve Blair was shot in the head,Monday night while
squatting in a vacant house.
Today the trail of blood and open door remain.

Chief Warren Riley and Mayor Ray Nagins call for residents to
galvanize is an insult. We have been galvanized for 16 months.

We live in a City where the inaction of our Federal, State and local
governments forced us to step over the bodies of the dead.

Each Death Diminishes us,that we continue to be ignored by the State,
The City and Federally elected officials, who are duty bound to
represent us,Diminishes the United States of America.

We are doing our Community Policing, we need back up. Back up by the
NOPD,back up by the D.A.,back up by City Hall and Back up by our

As a Neighborhood, we have been diligent in our efforts to prevent the
bloodshed. We photograped,we followed and reported. We e mailed, we
called, and we met in person with the District 2 Police.


To quote our Mayor.


“Let’s fix the biggest Goddam crisis in the History of America.”

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About Karen Gadbois

Karen Gadbois co-founded The Lens. She now covers New Orleans government issues and writes about land use for Squandered Heritage. For her work with television reporter Lee Zurik exposing widespread misuse of city recovery funds — which led to guilty pleas in federal court — Gadbois won some of the highest honors in journalism, including a Peabody Award, an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Award and a gold medal from Investigative Reporters and Editors. She can be reached at (504) 606-6013.

  • You were perfect. Chilling even. You were excellent in your delivery, content and emotion. i was blown away. You were strong, courageous and above all, human. It was a phenomenal speech. Thank you.

  • Michelle

    You said it perfectly, Varg! Karen, you were inspirational. I have quoted you more than anyone else at the rally (okay, Bart also). “Chief Warren Riley and Mayor Ray Nagins call for residents to galvanize is an insult. We have been galvanized for 16 months.” AMEN, my friend!

  • You were kind enough to show it to me before you read it. It was perfect on paper. But your delivery of it set it on fire, and the crowd with it. I am so sorry I couldn’t manage to get in front for you like I promised. We just couldn’t get through. But you did it, and your voice didn’t shake a bit.

    I am so proud of you. You nailed it. Your courage is amazing.

  • Every comment I’ve started to leave seems inadequate, so let it suffice for me to say these aren’t just important words, but important in so many other ways.

  • Karen

    I’m not a regular reader of this blog but have been searching the internet to find more of the passion that I felt today at the rally on City Hall. You were a fantastic speaker. Thank you for calling Mayor Nagin out on his own words. We need that passion and anger to come back in him. This rally was the first step; let’s ALL work to keep this passion moving forward and fix this crisis!

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  • mike

    Great Job Karen!!

  • Great speech, You are truly a community activist, thank you..

  • Wonderful speech, well delivered. I was proud to be there and to have met you. You and Bart did a wonderful job and represent us well.

  • Cathy stuck in Austin

    Wish i could have been there girl! Heard great things from all my peeps that were there. I’m so proud of everyone…

  • Michael Homan

    Great job Karen.

  • Fabulous performance, Karen. I tried to get closer to the stage and say hi but it didn’t happen.

    Well done.

  • Karen, it was fantastic to have the view I did, just wish I’d had a better camera than my phone! Standing three feet in front of the podium it felt like a blast of windwhen you yelled out, “I AM PISSED!”

    Watching you throw his words back in his face was one of the best moments I’ve had since being back!

  • I wish I could have been there. I know the cruddy video/audio available at nola.com didn’t come close to doing you justice, but it was still electrifying.

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  • Excellent speech, Karen. Thank you.

  • Tighe

    thank you for those inspirational words…i am in la-la and a friend sent the speech to me man you people in N.O. are awesomely strong…hope to see you in D.C. on jan 27th

  • I wish I’d been there with my camera…Let me know if any more are planned. I caught some of your speech on tv news.
    Great job !! I just realized you had a blog…All of us are tired of the crime, I retired because it is just too dangerous driving a taxicab.