reports from a local parent monitoring public education in New Orleans

When good people allow bad things to happen

sometimes people have good intentions and things go awry or they do not get the results they intended. this is not what i am thinking about.

i am working to understand or find peace with, whatever, understanding, absence of frustration with -
well really God is telling me to give it up to him for how to handle the situations, so that’s what i’ll do -

but i am still processing and i am trying to reconcile how so often i see good people go along with things they know are wrong. people have been admonished that it is rude to address -for instance school board members- personally, to ask for accountability. in meetings, if you say, why did you allow such and such? you are told by -for instance pastorek- ‘now, now, we don’t want to make it personal’ so you are not allowed to hold anyone accountable. You are moderated out. You might get a moment to speak but your comments are ignored and nothing changes so there is little to any benefit of asking for accountability except people who are very passionate about a particular issue, particularly affected by some massive dysfunction in the system, and/or masochistic. Also you have to be stubborn as hell and refuse to give in and refuse to let evil prevail unchecked.
That is one side. The other side is people who i have now come across so repeatedly that i am calling it a dynamic. that is the people who are now seeing with their own eyes the wrongfullness and connectedness of the causes of our peoples’ continued, greater suffering and cruel, cruel injustices that are played out every day here. blood bath and bank robbery. and yet people who see it will agree with me over and over, whispered in hallways after meetings, spoken openly at coffeeshops, yes we know it is all a fraud, how and who. yet when it comes time to speak up, where are these people? they disappear. hopefully they aren’t gone forever, your friends, even if you’re disappointed (my perspective). Lance Hill calls this brave new era “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” which is brilliant and I think it references more the zombie-like army of imported, in transition government and non-profit consultants we have to deal with and how local people have changed, so you rarely know who you’re dealing with. By the way, the young high priced hookers I mean consultants are zombie-like because they’re still loaded/disoriented from the night before, and not all the consultants have been disrespectful people, just very many. I watched a RSD facilities team tour Craig elementary for 2 hours and never made eye contact with anyone. it was repugnant.

so back to 2008. now we have all seen enough. in my experiences i have had at least 5 women tell me in detail their experiences of wrongdoing by people supposed to be helping us that would then not come forward to make a formal complaint and perhaps bring justice. the number is actually much higher when i really think about it. this is another experience for me of the “Body Snatchers” dynamic. there are people who (heart-achingly) disappear and people who say they love New Orleans fiercely then sadly aren’t reliable when when she needs them, even to do simple things, things they do every day like forward an email, to move things along… it makes you wonder of the city really is buried under the weight of her own dysfunction. now people are saying the summer’s going to be really violent because the economy’s so bad and the recovery money never reached us. it should have but it didn’t. now what are we going to do? can we change in time?
i also know champions of new orleans who every day balance war strategy with diplomacy in trying to protect our fair city from those who do her harm. the problem is these people don’t have a larger-based army because the ones who know what’s wrong (like former employees, other organizations, charity navigator) won’t speak up and put the information out for the rest of the world to truly know what is going on other that what people suspect, and word of mouth. what people tell me quietly is that it is far worse than anything we are worried about. there has been so much money stolen from the recovery of new orleans communities by people telling you (the world) they were helping us. some of the most famous people in the world were used in this process, and who dares speak against that?

who dares to speak against anyone? why is it always left to a few, who must take the exposure for everyone else? it is fear, apathy, tradition?


  1. Yes, ma’am. This is what got to me last week and STILL gets to me. I’m seeing a lot of shenanigans with regards to the schools here, but I’m not seeing enough being done about those things. Nobody with any numbers, serious information, or leverage is speaking out, and it scares the hell out of me. It is even scarier that it extends beyond the schools because it make me wonder what the hell kind of world we are living in now that can’t simply do the right thing most of the time. “The right thing” is becoming an exception, not a rule….or, if it is a rule, it is being subjected to so many loopholes that the results of its enforcement are sadly laughable.

    Comment by liprap — May 26, 2008 @ 12:23 pm

  2. Too bad i didnt come across this blog before. Great stuff you got here. Thanks.

    Comment by Psychic Advice — July 13, 2008 @ 7:19 am

  3. Nice post, you got some good points there – thank you.

    Comment by Import from China — July 20, 2008 @ 11:40 am

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