Posted by schroeder915 on February 14, 2007
The tornado(s) that ripped through New Orleans were unexpected. I had to get up early on Tuesday to go into the Black Pearl neighborhood at Uptown Square. There was considerable destruction there — car windows burst out, trees sheared and their tops slammed into cars, a church with it’s entire facade and windows blown out, a lot of new utility poles damaged and leaning on houses. When, later, I did a loop up St. Charles Avenue and Carrollton Avenue, I discovered that the destruction was far worse than what I’d already seen. The whole facade of the KIPPS school was torn off exposing classrooms inside, roofs blown off, windows blown out, live oaks shredded — it looked like the mess left after Hurricane Katrina (without the flooding). And then the tornado went through Gentilly and Pontchartrain Park. State Farm alone was saying yesterday that they expected about 5000 to 10,000 claims from the storm. These people need some serious help.
It might be inappropriate to follow with a delayed parade post, but this is New Orleans after all, and we refuse to be bowed by mother nature. Here are some Krewe of Barkus photos. As with Krewe du Vieux, I think the satire, floats, and costumes were better last year. A friend speculated that the effort put in this year might reflect this past year’s exhaustion and stress from the recovery effort.
Volunteers recently updated the Citizen Crime Watch Web site. It now contains assorted property and persons crimes for 2007. This resource could provide an extremely vital service to the community if the criminal justice system started supplying the raw 911 calls for service data and data from other systems. I encourage bloggers to advertise widely the call for criminal justice agencies to cooperate with grassroots development efforts by providing their data so that we can acquire a greater awareness about the safety of our neighborhoods, and identify ways to improve the criminal justice system. The crime mapping and reporting initiatives underway by volunteers aren’t just a novelty — they’re essential resources that belong to the community, and that belong in the community, where crime problems are lived with on a daily basis, and where confidence in the criminal justice system has eroded. Communities need to be empowered to own the solutions to their problems for the community policing idea to work — but they also need to have the data in hand to hold their public officials accountable when the criminal justice system isn’t backing them up.
I’m trying to get caught up on a number of tasks, but time permitting, I soon hope to post some reflections on the testimony of NOPD Superintendent Warren Riley and District Attorney Eddie Jordan at the City Council criminal justice committee hearing this past Monday.
Posted in Carnival, Crime, Crime Mapping, GIS, Mardi Gras, New Orleans | 5 Comments »
Posted by schroeder915 on February 8, 2007
So asked an anonymous commenter who only referred to himself as “Where’s Schroeder.”
Sorry folks. The anticipation is killing me too. There’s so much going on right now, but so little time. I do, in fact, have a lot to report since my absence.
I’ll start right here — I want this thing enlarged poster size to hang on my wall …
And here …
The first image is a drawing made by Nagendra at a Saturday meetup of neighborhood activists. The diagram represents the new linkages between neighborhoods which began to form after Hurricane Katrina. Circles represent the nodes, or cells, of neighborhoods. Lines between the nodes are the arbitrary political boundaries drawn by politicians long before Hurricane Katrina because, Nagendra said, that was the only way they said they could govern. After Hurricane Katrina, those boundaries were washed away. Now, citizens are talking to and collaborating with whomever they chose. Linkages are forming with residents who live in distant neighborhoods based upon common needs. This was best demonstrated by the 5000-strong march on City Hall against violence, in which every neighborhood was represented — every race, every class, every age.
The second image is a prototype online crime mapping, reporting, alert, and analysis system. The public needs to start making noise for the raw 911 calls for service data to be made available to citizens at the same time the NOPD gets the data, in order to further develop this resource as a timely service for the community. Later, the demand for other criminal justice records can be made to complete an understanding about what’s happening in the criminal justice system, and to give citizens more powerful tools to demand greater accountability. There will be a brainstorming meeting to determine where to take this initiative in the future, Mon. 2/12, 7 p.m., Sound Cafe, 2700 Chartes St. (RSVP firstname.lastname@example.org in case the venue changes).
I’m still debugging my effort to move PGR to a final home on my own Web host. This will be coming soon, and then I’ll finally put back all the sidebar links which used to be on the old Blogger PGR.
Posted in Crime, Crime Mapping, GIS, Katrina Dissidents, New Orleans | 6 Comments »
Posted by schroeder915 on January 5, 2007
Two upcoming media events that merit attention:
Left Behind: The Story of the New Orleans Public Schools
January 10th, 7:30pm
Canal Place Cinema
It’s one of the best documentaries about New Orleans I’ve seen. WTUL’s Community Gumbo (91.5 FM) will feature an interview with Vince Morelli, one of the film’s directors, Saturday, January 6th, at 9:00 a.m.
And just in time for Mardi Gras (February 20th) …
The American Experience
An interesting map on the American Experience site traces the development of New Orleans neighborhoods along with improved drainage made possible by the Wood screw pump:
That reminds me — Carnival season starts again tomorrow! Whoosh! Once again, the arrival of Carnival season comes at a time when we really could use something positive to look forward to.
Laissez la révolution roulez!
New Orleans topography and flooding
P.S.: Notwithstanding the fact that I’ve been saving this post as I’ve been writing it, I’m about to make a third attempt to publish after having to retrieve lost copies by hitting the browser “Back” button and re-writing the recovered post. I’ve seen this happen enough in the past that I’m convinced now it isn’t just a passing glitch, it’s a systemic problem. WordPress.com is not succeeding lately in endearing me to them over Blogger.
Posted in Blogger vs. WordPress, Film, GIS, Media, New Orleans, PBS | 1 Comment »