Seems like everybody is getting the hell out of New Orleans. Including LaToya Cantrell, the mayor who has accelerated its decline into the status of a place everybody must get the hell out of.
The Traveling Destroya Cavalcade, having recently returned from Switzerland, is now headed to…Singapore, for a “climate summit.”
New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell is scheduled to take another trip overseas just days after city council members took steps to restrict her spending on travel.
The mayor’s office says she’s heading to Singapore for a week to attend the “World Cities Summit,” which begins this weekend.
Her office says the summit will focus on challenges facing urban communities, such as climate change.
Last week, two New Orleans council members introduced a proposed ordinance to restrict travel expenses for officials. It would apply to “non-essential trips,” including trips for festivals and sister city agreements.
Critics say the mayor’s recent trips overseas are not appropriate while the city battles rising crime and a police manpower shortage.
Just last Friday, an NOPD officer quit mid-shift when he realized he would have little to no backup on a busy night in the French Quarter.
“This is really not the time to be going out of the country to Singapore or other long-distance trips when the city council is considering a reduction to your travel budget,” Dillard University political analyst Robert Collins says. “It sort of gives your critics more ammunition to work with. So the mayor is really not helping her case.”
This will be Cantrell’s third overseas trip in a little more than a month. She recently traveled to France and Switzerland to sign sister city agreements.
She says these jaunts across the world are “important” for New Orleans’ economy and culture. What bullshit. Ghana, Cuba and Ascona, Switzerland are not places from which New Orleans can mine some great economic or cultural mother lode.
She knows she’s not fooling anybody. She doesn’t care.
LaToya Cantrell’s marriage has collapsed and she’s now openly running around with another man. She hangs out in bars and is commonly rowdy and combative. There was video of Cantrell pushing and shoving with a woman in a ladies’ bathroom at a rap concert venue a couple of weeks ago. Cantrell claimed she was breaking up a fight, which was dubious, to say the least.
And the city is in a state of collapse. The New Orleans Police Department is all but disintegrating, and its chief is attacking the media for reporting the disintegration.
Meanwhile, the business community in New Orleans is disintegrating just like the NOPD is.
New Orleans business owners are fed up with the rise in crime in the city, which has seen its murder rate spike to highs unseen in almost three decades.
“I think there is a lot of people that have worked in the French Quarter and loved to work in the French Quarter, but they just don’t feel safe coming down here anymore,” Christian Pendleton of the Louisiana Restaurant Association told WWLTV. “They don’t feel safe, leaving work at night and having to walk to their cars because of the lack of police presence in the French Quarter and knowing nothing is happening criminals when they’re found, they’re getting the proverbial detention slip.”
Pendleton’s comments come as crime has surged in New Orleans in recent years, and 2022 is showing no signs that the trend will improve any time soon. The city’s murder rate is on pace to hit 74.12 murders per 100,000 population, a mark that would put the city among the highest in the world and the highest New Orleans has recorded since 1994. Unofficial numbers from June show 31 murders in the city as the typical summer crime wave begins to heat up.
Murders began surging in the city in 2020, jumping to 201 from 119 in 2019. That number rose again in 2021 to 218, an 83% increase over 2019’s number. Now, New Orleans is on pace to eclipse 300 murders in 2022, something that has residents and business owners concerned.
A mayor worth having wouldn’t be going anywhere else right now. A mayor worth having would be doing everything she could to right the ship at the NOPD. She’d be on a crash recruiting program for new officers, trying to poach them from surrounding parishes. She’d be asking the governor to send state police and even national guard to stabilize the out of control crime rate in the city. She’d be trying to organize neighborhood watch groups so folks could protect their homes and neighborhoods from criminals.
And she’d be on a listening tour of small businesses all over the city.
Instead she’s going to Singapore to be wined and dined by Third World kleptocrats and left-wing nonprofit toadies and fraudsters.
Contempt is the only word which describes this. LaToya Cantrell has so much contempt for the citizens of New Orleans it’s breathtaking. She’s the Marie Antoinette of weaponized governmental failure, and she’s got three more years to finish off the Big Easy.
It’s hard to imagine New Orleans recovering.