New Orleanians Get Too Negative

It was a glorious weekend to be in New Orleans.

It was the last Sunday of the Jazz and Heritage Festival, Santana had just finished his set and the Neville Bothers were about to take the stage. My friend Ted Jones and I were sitting under the big chief tent adjacent to the Acura stage.

A man from New York and his wife sat in front of us. The man turned and struck a conversation with us about what it is like being in New Orleans post hurricane Katrina. He told us that he had been coming to New Orleans since 1975; he added that he was happy to see such a unique city on the come back. He extolled the wonder of our music, food, culture, spirituality and our humanity.

It was after that conversation that I began to think about how negative some of us are when it comes to appreciating what we have as a city. To listen to some of us, every politician is a crook, every agency is dysfunctional, every cause is wrong headed, and all the people are of less than average intelligence.

I wonder what we could accomplish if we all adopted a sense of positive energy about our city and about ourselves. Can you recall how it uplifting it was in the chaotic days immediately following hurricane Katrina – when we were all pulling together to help each other get back on our feet? Let us try to recapture that commitment and concentrate on making things work. What do you think?