I am a 58-year-old New Orleans resident. I grew up at the Lakefront, Lakewood South and at my grandmother’s home on Audubon Place until raising my children in a safe Metairie. I’ve also graduated from Tulane.
The point is, I understand New Orleans from the core and from many perspectives. My wife and I became empty nesters and moved to the French Quarter like so many intend to but never do.
My wife’s involvement in the civic and museum community in the Quarter has been a blessing. I am also a member of the Security Committee of the French Quarter Management District, thus having easier access to crime statistics and information.
We, and our significant property tax responsibility, could potentially be pressured to move due to these safety issues; we would prefer not to.
The Quarter is dangerous beyond public awareness. I now carry a legally concealed weapon and have had to show it twice, which was very uncomfortable. The overall issue of unacceptable behavior, language and aggressive, criminal solicitation is just lost in the “noise.”
The 8th District commander is a superb leader shackled by ridiculously limited resources.
Further, I consider the New Orleans mayor a personal friend and a smart, resourceful leader. However, those skills need to be redirected to real solutions.
In my opinion, you, and the tourists, are just not completely safe in the Quarter!
Unless real and significant security measures are enacted in the short-term — periodic state trooper support is not the solution — and the “elephant in the room” issue of the illegitimate birth rate in New Orleans is addressed amongst community leaders in the longer term, the French Quarter will be reduced to moral and economic rubble. New Orleans is not economically diverse enough to survive it.
We could become Detroit.