Thursday, January 11, 2007
Anger rises in New Orleans
Posted By Anderson Cooper: 6:17 PM ET
  67 Comments
Glad to see you back New Orleans "Keeping Them Honest". Can't wait to see what Ray has to say - if anything.

p.s. Put your seatbelt on.
Posted By Anonymous Stacey, Ottawa, Canada : 6:39 PM ET
I'm glad to see that 360 has made their way back to New Orleans for another report. The increase in crime will most likely have an effect on the number of tourists going down for Mardi Gras, which could hurt the city's desperately needed income. Looking forward to tonight's show and an update on accountability and progress made in the city. Hopefully the mayor will be able to schedule an interview because it would be interesting to hear his perspective on the increase in crime and the state of the city.
Posted By Anonymous liz toledo, Oh : 6:41 PM ET
Anderson.......thank you so much for keeping the spotlight on New Orleans. After more then a year it is a sad commentary to see the state that New Orleans is still in. Keep up the tremendous work. I will be watching your report fron New Orleans tonight.
Posted By Anonymous Megan O. Toronto, ON, Canada : 6:42 PM ET
As a former resident of New Orleans and a native I want to thank you for all your work. Few people believe me when I tell them of the lack of progress that is happening in New Orleans. I tell them that if they want the truth to listen to you. Thank you.
Posted By Anonymous Terrie Brookins, < frmr > New Orleans. LA; Oshawa, Ontario Canada : 6:49 PM ET
Hmm... I seem to have noticed, from at least my own experience, and increase in crime in general, my own neighborhood being a prime example.

Hopefully this coverage will really shed more light on the situation. The nation seems to have abandoned New Orleans and forgotten that there is still work to be done.
Posted By Anonymous Kimber Streams, Lousiville KY : 6:49 PM ET
Hi Anderson,
It will take the people to rise up and demand change. However, it might take a CNN camera to get the people in charge to do some explaining..Call them on the carpet, point those cameras and ask the tough questions. Keep them honest, Keep their feet to the fire and keep the keepers of the city on the hot seat. Until the solutions are given and more importantly..solved..Take Care Good Luck
Posted By Anonymous Lorie Ann, Buellton, Calif. : 6:52 PM ET
I am scheduled to take my daughter to a volleyball tournament in NO in March.Would you take your child there knowing what you know and seeing what you have seen?

ps-Why aren't you wearing your seatbelt?
Posted By Anonymous Melissa, Jonesboro, AR : 6:52 PM ET
Thank you AC360 for taking time out of all the other coverage of the war etc. to go back and keep everyone honest about what is still going on after Katrina. I drove through New Orleans in September to adopt a Katrina dog and was shocked at all the rebuilding that needed to be done! There is still so much hurt and anger and it saddens me that this country has not done more... It inspires me to keep helping in anyway that I can
Posted By Anonymous Nicole, Tampa, FL : 7:01 PM ET
Thank you, thank you, thank you for covering this! We need the world to know what's happening here!
Posted By Anonymous J. Kelly, New Orleans, LA. : 7:02 PM ET
Anderson I can't wait for tonight's show. You seem to do some of your best work in New Orleans. I'll be watching...
Posted By Anonymous Jess, Paris, KY : 7:03 PM ET
Hi Anderson~
I am so glad you are in New Orleans. My gosh where will the problems end? New Orleans should be back together by now and yet there are so many compound complex problems with little or no solutions. When I was in NOLA a few weeks ago visiting a friend in the French Quarter, there was a water pressure issue. Also, have you noticed how many rats and cockroaches abound post Katrina? They scurry under your feet as you walk down the street. Gross! Thanks for hanging in there with New Orleans. It's worth saving!
Posted By Anonymous Betty Ann, Nacogdoches TX : 7:04 PM ET
This feels like being stuck in one of those Head On commericals that run during 360 - same thing over and over. Promises, promises but nothing gets done. I'm amazed that there's anyone left in NOLA who bothers to vote. How could you believe in the system after all of this?
Posted By Anonymous Claire Colvin, White Rock, BC : 7:06 PM ET
So glad someone is finally talking about things down in New Orleans. It really seems to be a vicious circle down there. There is no recovery money and so business such as the 1300 French Quarter & tourist businesses that did not reopen deprive people of jobs. The lack of jobs wears on people and they get frustrated which causes crime.

Getting the money to rebuild may be the easiest part, the hard part is too find someone honest enough to make sure the money goes to the right places and people. But where do you find such a person that's the 64,000.00 question.

My one question to anyone covering New Orleans - how about one positive story for us sometime.
Posted By Anonymous Marcia Warren, MI : 7:11 PM ET
Anderson,

I am so glad you are back in New Orleans. We haven't seen you there since 08/29/2006 and we want the focus kept on the city and the Gulf Coast in general. Looking forward to the show this evening!
Posted By Anonymous Sandra Street, Seattle, WA : 7:11 PM ET
Hey Anderson,
Maybe shifting the focus back on New Orleans and the Gulf Coast will alieviate the anger the people are feeling just a bit. I really think that the built up resentment the people feel stems from Katrina's aftermath and the inability to resume their lives or even feel that there's a light at the end of the tunnel. I sure don't get the feeling that re-electing Mayor Nagin was a very wise decision.
Posted By Anonymous Bev Ontario Canada : 7:12 PM ET
Anderson:
I just left New Orleans on Monday, January 8, 2007, after covering volunteers in New Orleans. It was my first visit to the city and its devastation. It is not just the Helen Hill murder but the city atmosphere seemed uneasy. Or maybe it is always like that.

I felt the "uneasiness" while talking to the bus drivers, cabbies and small businesses I visited. Everyone was pleasant but "on edge". Some talked about leaving New Orleans for good while others just wanted to survive one more day.

Yes, they looked tired. I don't know how much more this city, its survivors and its constant under-current of violence and despair can last without some kind of intervention from outside.

To be honest, I wouldn't return as a tourist but I will return as an advocate for volunteers and as a journalist.

I am thrilled you are in New Orleans! It needs national coverage to expose the death of this great city.
Posted By Anonymous Sharon D., Indianapolis, IN : 7:13 PM ET
Dear Anderson,

I can tell by the look on your face that you are not looking forward to this assignment.

Maybe if government officials had followed through on their promises to this once glorious city, the escalating crime may have been avoided. Unfortunately, the neglect shown by the government, both local and federal, sends a message to the criminal element that no one cares about these people, thus putting them at their mercy.

I hope your visit will make a difference; I would like to visit New Orleans. Good luck!

Jo Ann
Posted By Anonymous Jo Ann Matese, North Royalton, Ohio : 7:21 PM ET
What's the deal with establishing some degree of order down there?

I'm hearing that there are very few police offcers, let alone laws in effect...
Posted By Anonymous Ihsan Amin // Philly Area, PA : 7:38 PM ET
I used to live in New Orleans. The crime is always there, and no wonder, when the Louisiana mentality is "The bad guy is the good guy". Look at ex-Governor Edwards--a crook who kept getting elected. Now Nagin. When the people of that state and city wise up and elect decent people, something might get done. When the people stop waiting for handouts from the Federal
government and start doing some of their own work in the city, maybe there will be change.
Posted By Anonymous M.G. Gallagher, Mobile, AL : 7:40 PM ET
I don't believe this crime is caused by frustration in the community. It is caused by people who are taking advantage of the stretched resources to take what they want and rule their tiny fiefdom. As long as people are allowed to kill for only a few years in prison it will continue. Sadly...
Posted By Anonymous Andy, Cincinnati OH : 7:41 PM ET
Those morons reelected Mayor Nagin. I think they got what they paid for.
Posted By Anonymous Cheryl, Houston TX : 7:41 PM ET
Hi Anderson,
It's sad and scary that in our country there can be so much red tape preventing people from getting much needed help and support. I hope your spotlight on NOLA prompts someone to look at how the government can make good on it's promises. I look forward to your program tonight.
Good luck!
Pamina
Posted By Anonymous Pamina, Pittsford, New York : 7:43 PM ET
Anderson, I have a cousin who was killed in New Orleans a year ago during Mardi Gras weekend. He was run over by a guy in a pickup who apparently didn't care for the way he looked at him. His poor wife witnessed it, sadly. I have to wonder not only about the murder rate, but the ability, staffing, and motivation of law enforcement to solve and arrest, and the ability of the courts to convict.
Posted By Anonymous L. Lappe, Lubbock, TX : 7:44 PM ET
The comments of the mayor are of no great surprise. It's what many of us in Louisiana but not in New Orleans expected...words, no results. Remember America, this is the leader of New Orleans who was there BEFORE there was a Katrina. The same inabilities that are present in dealing with the crime of today were there when a storm named Katrina had yet to strike.

Remember that also when fingers blame the national government for much of the Katrina mess. The root of the problems were local and inherent to the way New Orleans conducted its political life and with whom it chose as its local leaders.
Posted By Anonymous Rob Lafayette, Louisiana : 7:45 PM ET
I just spent five days in the French Quarter and I'm not surprised at this. The people were very unfriendly and some were even downright rude. I didn't feel safe on the streets during the day, much less at night. Maybe things have changed since Katrina but you would think that the residents would welcome tourists to boost their economy. I won't be going back again.
Posted By Anonymous Marty, Concord NC : 7:46 PM ET
Why is it easier to get money for Iraq but not for someplace closer to home like the Big Easy? I really don't understand our administration at all
Posted By Anonymous Tamara Sacramento CA : 7:47 PM ET
This is another perfect reason they should have just plowed New Orleans under and left the area. The City was a hell hole before the storm, and now it's just gotten worse.
Posted By Anonymous Dave - Tampa, FL : 7:51 PM ET
Hi Anderson,

"Katrina Fatigue" - that's a phrase that has unfortunately defined New Orleans for over eight months now. Thank you for bringing attention to New Orleans - the lives lost and heroes that continously work towards rebuilding New Orleans are not statistics. It seems like everything has become numbers on a page and somehow people move on. But how can you when people don't have running water or electricity, when the money seems out of reach, and when the government fails to take action. People shouldn't be remembered as a statistic - everyone has a story. Thank you for making a difference by showing the importance of this story.
And like always, I will tune in tonight for the report.

Shruti
Posted By Anonymous Shruti Bala, Glendale, AZ : 7:52 PM ET
First, thank you for all that you have done to keep our plight in the news. We are far from "back to normal." Also, a big thanks to everyone across the country and world that has helped in so many ways.

I have lived in New Orleans my entire life and have raised my 3 daughters here, all of whom are now teenagers. I thought the most frightening time of my life was when we returned to live in our home on October 9, 2005 some 6 or 7 weeks or so after Katrina. There were no streets lights, no neighbors, no police anywhere to be seen patrolling the darks streets, no businesses opened...it really felt like no man's land. But, 16 months or so after Katrina, I am more afraid for my children than I was when we returned. Most people here are just trying desperately to put their lives back together. Wondering if your children will make it back home or be a victim should just not come into play.
Posted By Anonymous Sherry, New Orleans, LA : 7:52 PM ET
Anderson,please continue the focus on New Orleans. This is my home town and although I don't live there anymore, my family is still there. I cry for my city and I am so angry with Nagin who does nothing but watch the clock until he can leave for Texas.
Posted By Anonymous Lucy Algere' Boston, Massachusetts : 7:53 PM ET
I'm suspicious of your "Keeping Them Honest" theme. Who is "them?" My guess is you are implying it's the government.

What's wrong with these people in New Orleans? They should be ashamed to consider themselves Americans. In a time of crisis the people turn to crime.

Get off your liberal high horse Anderson. Have the guts to admit that the people of New Orleans need to take some responsibility for getting themselves out of this mess.
Posted By Anonymous Peter, New York, NY : 7:54 PM ET
The situation in New Orleans should make us all pause and reflect on problems we have in this country.

Any city in the U.S. could find itself in the same situation due to an environmental disaster or terrorist attack.

New Orleans has shown us how ill prepared all of us are when confronted with a major disaster in our cities.

New Orleans should have been a wake up call to every local, state and federal disaster agency in the nation. Instead, it's become a city where we point fingers and say it couldn't happen to us. Well people, it can happen anywhere and burying our heads in the sand isn't going to make this go away.

Wake up America.
Posted By Anonymous Joseph Kowalski, North Huntingdon, PA : 7:55 PM ET
Thank you for again showing the horrific state of New Orleans. People elsewhere have no idea how bad it is there. I went back (home) in December 2006 and was appalled at how little has been done. New Orleans needs for the world to know what's (NOT) going on there.
Posted By Anonymous Liz, Hollywood, CA : 7:57 PM ET
Underneath anger lies sadness and frustration. I've read so much blame in these comments today. I miss my New Orleans, the New Orleans where my family lived in the 1750's and returned to post-Katrina. I hope enough national media gets something going. I hope the corruption clears (although Louisiana and New Orleans have historically been corrupt for centuries and I doubt a miracle happens just because you're breathing down C. Ray's neck-trust me, I wish it were that easy). The crime is no different than before Katrina and Jordan is corrupt (he let a pedophile off with his picture in the registry and no jail time or rehab, and I know that for a fact). All the political disaster that was New Orleans pre and now post-Katrina aside, people need to visit the city, to spend money, to enjoy New Orleans again. No other city in the world is like her. Next weekend the women of my family are having tea at Windsor Court. I plan to follow family tradition and take my nieces to my favorite doll shop and buy them whatever they want. I won't get to see a show at the Saenger. I will miss what no longer exists there. We need to enjoy and visit what is. We need to hold accountable those that have been prejudiced for so long in that city. I doubt if the mansions on St. Charles were destroyed the way the Ninth Ward was people would still be homeless a year and a half later. The city would have stepped in with the state. Those areas would have been rebuilt down to the oak trees. Millions were spent on the Dome. People don't have running water. And yet, my aunt has been back in her house in Bay St. Louis, MS, since September. Go figure. I just know we need to do what we can, support the city, and enjoy it (it's Carnival season and the Saints are in the playoffs). And more seriously, we need to voted competent people in who can better help the city recover. For the record, Cameron, LA, is still destroyed, too. Governor Blanco really hasn't done a whole lot for the west end of the state, either. Thanks for the coverage and the dedication. It's still above and beyond what anyone else has done. And until my New Orleans is back, I will continue to be saddened and frustrated and angry, too. Every person in this nation should be outraged.
Posted By Anonymous TA Cheramie, Berwick, LA : 7:57 PM ET
It's extremely frustrating to watch whats happening to New Orleans. As a resident of Pensacola Florida, I know all to well "There for the grace of God go I", but I am doubly frustrated by the fact that the same residents who are angry with Nagin are the same people who VOTED FOR HIM. That's where my patience for the grumbling runs thin.
Posted By Anonymous ML McInnis Gulf Breeze, FL : 8:03 PM ET
It is a pleasure to see Anderson back in New Orleans today covering the crime. I feel mayor Nagin is the best he can do with the resources that he has. He can't do it own his own. Anderson I hope you will be back in town for Mardi Gras this year. I hope the crime has come to some sort of improvement before the event. I do think tourist are going to reconsider their travel plans if this situtation has not improved. If it's handled like the rebuilding effort we are in sad shape. Thank you
Posted By Anonymous Mike St. Amant,LA : 8:04 PM ET
Anderson-I hope Nagin actually keeps his appointment with you. I want to hear his annswers to the questions I know you've been wanting to ask for a long time. I don't want to hear excuses or about the reimbursement problems w/the federal money. Answers pure and simple. Please keep going down to NO and keeping us posted. It's one of the most important domestic stories that needs to be told. Keep safe and buckle up!
Posted By Anonymous Cheryl M., Johnston RI : 8:05 PM ET
maybe he woulda said "New Orleans, at the end of the day, will be a Chocolate City"?!
Posted By Anonymous mark, new orleans, la : 8:06 PM ET
I have heartfelt sympathy for the people of New Orleans for all they have been through and continue to go through. I do however firmly believe they should place much of the blame for these recent woes on themselves. They re-elected Nagin after it was very clear that he blundered BADLY during Katrina as did the Governor. They both just pointed to Washington for the blame. While the Feds should share the blame, it starts, as do the resolutions directly on the local and state governments. From an outsiders viewpoint they couldn't govern before Katrina, what makes you think they could govern after?
Posted By Anonymous Donald, Chicago, IL. : 8:07 PM ET
Hi Anderson- Those poor people living in danger and chaos after all this time. They need action, not more empty promises.
Posted By Anonymous Carol B., Frederick, MD : 8:08 PM ET
So why did they vote for Nagin then? They re-elected someone who was ineffective and largely absent. Did they really think it would change?

You reap what you sow.
Posted By Anonymous Em, Toronto, Ontario, Canada : 8:13 PM ET
Not hard to believe things are as poor of shape as they are down in NO. Lethargic response in the first place, seems the current admin still a no show.

Shocked? Not at all. We have the Nat'l Gaurd on the border down here in Ariz running around w/ guns but no authority, getting run off by M16 toting border crossing Mexican gunmen in the night. The Gaurd kept thier eyes on them, but uh,... they got away.

So if what you folks want down in NO is the Nat'l Gaurd to help out, make sure you put in a request that they not only come armed(w/ammo) but that they have the authority to to be of real service to your community, and not just be there as spectators.

I have always love NO since I visited, I hope and wish the best for this incredible town.
Posted By Anonymous Paul B, Phoenix, AZ : 8:14 PM ET
I lost much of my sympathy for New Orlean's people (I did contribute generously to the Katrina funds)when they reelected Nagrin after the horrid job he did before and after Katrina and their reelecting a thief (Jefferson) caught red handed to be their congressman.
Posted By Anonymous Phil Horn, West Orange, N. J. : 8:14 PM ET
Hey Anderson,

I got tired of listening to the same top ten hit on the radio and decided to listen to one of the local radio stations and instead of hearing about the Saints - I heard you, what a wonderful surprise. It was evident listening to your voice that you still care and that you will one way or another make a difference. Thank you.

It is so hard to explain how New Orleans really is. I can only give an example. One night before the end of the year, I took my daughter and her friends to our Celebration in the Oaks at City Park. For some odd reason, it had closed early. Rather than go back home, we decided to go the French Quarter. We took Orleans Avenue as an alternative to Canal Street. This used to be a thriving if somewhat troubled neighborhood. It was so quiet, so devoid of people it was terrifying to say the least. We saw a few trailers in front of houses, but the streets and houses were so dark.

As for those of you, who continue to care, thank all of you as well. There are positive stories, but they are small ones. Along Pontchartrain Boulevard (six blocks or so from the 17th Street Canal Breach, some new houses are going up or at least the waterlogged and ring around the collar houses are being demolished or totally refurbished. There is some building in the lower 9th ward....Brocato's in Mid-City is open.

This week, I asked every class who came to the library not only what the New Orleans Saints theme song should be, but if they knew why many of the new Saints players and coaches came to our battered city. Well, of course they liked "This is the way we live, New Orleans remix more than the "Saints are Coming", but they also knew that many of the new players and coaches chose to come here because of Katrina and the students were grateful..It's only a little story, but it's a nice one,
Posted By Anonymous Ruth Brewington, Metairie, LA" : 8:15 PM ET
Considering that Mayor Nagin didn't do enough before Katrina hit (i.e., all those flooded school buses could have removed residents); is anyone really surprised that he is ineffective now?

As has been stated here, the increase in crime will probably have a detrimental effect on tourists visiting Mardi Gras.
Posted By Anonymous Kate Ferrara, NY, NY : 8:16 PM ET
Anderson:

Good to see you make your way back to the Big Easy for follow-up reporting on the rebuilding a la crime spree.

As volunteers, we hope that you shed light on the following:

We meet many people each day. We work with families who live in the worst neighborhoods, such as Central City and their only hope it seems is "us."

We have gutted houses on streets where people have been shot and yet, very, very few have ever bothered us and no one has ever (thankfully) shot us.

One of our volunteers was assaulted and robbed in downtown New Orleans yesterday in broad daylight. They hit him in his face and took $60.00.

He says the only thing that protected him from "god knows what" was his backpack that he swung around and hit the guy with - and then took off running.

He told some of us this story and one of us asked him why he didn't report it. His reply? "Because I was told it wouldn't do any good."

Perhaps a spotlight should be shown on some of the NOPD. Perhaps accountability is in order.

Then again, another volunteer has a restraining order against someone who is harassing her and the police have been amazingly wonderful and receptive. We hear that is rare.

As volunteers we have come out to help and working with Relief Spark we have seen all sides of the situation here. It's not just about rebuilding, it's about being a community.

So, as volunteers we ask that you shed light on the following issues that plaque this beautiful city and perhaps those who live outside the area can begin to step in and help us and other non-profit organizations:

-education
-NOPD
-debris removal (debris that clogs the streets and results in flooding)
-non-profit organizations and volunteers (we have never seen a report on the smaller grass root organizations - and we too get a lot accomplished!)
-Central City families

There are a lot of issues that this city faces and we rely on YOU and other media outlets to shed light on THE TRUTH!

Help us give back New Orleans to its people and send a message to people outside of the area to come out and volunteer, make a difference and fight crime by WORKING TOGETHER!

-Thanks .....

Relief Spark Volunteers

BTW: you really should wear your seatbelt! ;)
Posted By Anonymous Relief Spark Volunteers, New Orleans, LA : 8:20 PM ET
It's good to see someone giving time to help an ailing domestic city for once. Its just sad that other cities around the nation have the same problems as New Orleans but no one cares. Detroit, St. Louis, Flint and others have had these problems it's just too bad they aren't resort type destinations such as New Orleans so they'll never get the help they need.
Posted By Anonymous Mike M., Royal Oak, MI : 8:20 PM ET
Is it the people craving attention or the people wishing for something to be done?

I think it's a little of both. Nonetheless, I agree the crime needs to be stopped, but with what? What does the city have that they can do? Money? They're out of that. Services? They all left town. Many buisnesses are not going to go back to New Orleans as it is, which is going to make it even harder to get jobs. What's that cause? As Marcia from Warren, MI said: "A vicious circle".

The people expect miracles from a city, state, and nation that are practically impossible to achieve, at least at this time, but I'm finding it odd that now New Orleans is ranking up there with 9/11... but not many people in NYC are complaining anymore...

*sigh*... Let's not live in the past? Let's look forward and help ourselves to a new future. People have died, many for no reason, and more are dieing simply because they go back to the area that once killed their lives, only to relive the pain once more...
Posted By Anonymous Daniel Grape, Pittsburgh PA : 8:21 PM ET
Thanks for keeping the spotlight in New Orleans, Anderson.

I'm a New Orleans native who left almost 15 years ago because I tired of hearing gunshots at night, having guns pulled on me and being carjacked, and having people killed and policemen shot on the streets right outside my home. The killing is nothing new, and New Orleans has always been one of this country's most violent cities.

What is new is having the residents of the city band together to protest the senseless violence and the failure of the city to keep the criminals off the streets. Katrina has turned the citizens from being Big Easies into Big Ativists and this is a positive trend.

The criminal justice system has failed completely in the City, and I hope that you cover this aspect of the story. In spite of the well-publicized problems with a few policemen, I believe the vast majority of the police force are doing the best they can under the circumstances. I hope that you can highlight the serious (should I say fatal?) problems with the district attorney's office and the courts, and the almost total failure to successfully prosecute murderers and other criminals.

I love the city -- thank you for your continued focus and caring.
Posted By Anonymous Bill Gary, Chevy Chase, MD : 8:22 PM ET
May be New Orleans residents are now reconsidering re-electing Nagin. May be picking a leader who only passed blame for Katrina onto others was not a good choice from the beginning.
Posted By Anonymous Shawn Dancik Germantown, MD : 8:22 PM ET
I am extremely saddened by the apparent lack of progress in New Orleans, both with reconstruction and in putting an end to the violence. My mother has such fond memories of living in New Orleans and I certainly hope that some day the city can be made even better than it was before Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast. Thank you for always reporting on the stories that matter.
Posted By Anonymous Kimberly Miller, Hiram, OH : 8:23 PM ET
thank you for your support. this is a great city, with wonderful, strong people. alot of work has been done, with still more to do. since the storm we have been lied to by the president, governer, and the "good for nothing" mayor. typical. the city is moving forward- by the people, not the goverment. keep busting their ass anderson.
Posted By Anonymous c guidry NEW ORLEANS, LA : 8:25 PM ET
Many Thanks Anderson for not abandoning us! We need you and the nation/world to come here. Please, do not abandon NOLA!

The crime and public officials are demoralizing to our will, but for every let down there is an answer of hope. I can attest first hand, progress is being made.


Friends and I have just completed our 4th house, and with it the reward of another happy family. I have not the vocabulary to express the personal rewards.

Our weekends are busy, our people tired, but our hearts are full!
Stated best, "it was the best of times it is the worst of times", C.D.

NOLA is worth saving, and you America can make a difference.
Posted By Anonymous R. James Smith, New Orleans : 8:25 PM ET
Anderson,

Thank you so very much for your continued support and interest in our city. As one of the members of today's march, I was pleasantly surprised to see you and the CNN van there today. New Orleans is a very complicated place these days, and we need the continued attention of the news media along with the help of our local, state, and federal governments in this rebuilding process. I look forward to seeing the show tonight.
Posted By Anonymous Leila McRaven, New Orleans, LA : 8:26 PM ET
Anderson,

Thanks for coming down here to cover this story. It seems that most in positions of power have long since forgotten about New Orleans. People here have had it real tough for over a year now. People want to rebuild and all they need are the resources to get started. There is money appropriated for this, but it is not getting to the people. The crime wave is just adding more difficulty and anxiety to times that already strain even the strongest souls.

Also, please explain the geography of the murders and let potential visitors know that the French Quarter is still a safe place to visit. Everyone who comes down to help -- be it volunteering or just spending your money here -- is very much appreciated.
Posted By Anonymous Michael, New Orleans LA : 8:26 PM ET
Dear Anderson,

Yay, I am so thankful that you are finally back in NOLA. I have missed your updates. Thank goodness they can count on you down there. You seem to be the ONLY one.

Personally I believe that the time has come to hold Mayor Nagin accountable and there is no one better to handle this tough assignment than you. Why has no one asked him the tough questions? I have a feeling that he is somewhat leery of you - he surely keeps avoiding you!

Clearly something has to be done to help these people. Like Iraq, this has gone from bad to worse. Government - bah! Hopefully those in NOLA can find some honest officials who will drop the "spin" and work with them to rebuild NOLA. It breaks my heart to see what these poor people are dealing with. No, I will not call them "poor" people; they are rich with tradition and with love for their city and each other. I believe that this crime wave is somewhat based on the immense amounts of frustration that these people have lived with for well over a year. Is it any wonder? How would any of us act when faced with the issues they have been faced with? Sad. No one deserves what they have been through. Completely tragic.

Please continue to do all you can to help them and to hold those accountable who are responsible for this travesty. Oh, and PLEASE wear your seatbelt! Stay safe. We need you!
Posted By Anonymous Pati McMillan, Camp Hill, PA : 8:26 PM ET
People in New Orleans need to remember that they are the one's that put Nagin back in business. If you want to change the history of a city, start with a new mayor. The city had problem when he was in office before the hurricane's hit, why did they believe it would change now? Start with a clean slate and let's see where this state can go!! We need more honesty and integrity here!
Posted By Anonymous Elisa, Winnfield, LA : 8:28 PM ET
Anderson,

The fact that the people would not let Nagin speak only shows the frustration that everyone feels toward him. But, the people of NOLA re-elected him! The same goes for Bill Jefferson. Nagin's no action reaction to Katrina was not enough to get us a new mayor, so why should we expect more from him now?
Thanks for keeping the spotlight on NOLA. We are doing our best to keep our city alive, but I must admit, even I am suffering post-K fatigue.
Posted By Anonymous Barbara, LaPlace, LA : 8:29 PM ET
For all of you who bother to comment on New Orleans and has never lived here, no other city in the U.S. has gone through what we are going through. So to point figures at the mayor and others - what other politicans has gone through total devastation of a city and rebounded? Stop watching t.v. and come see the damage for yourself. It is quick to say what needs to be done, but where is the money. You hear one thing, but no money is even coming into the city. So until you have lost every thing in your life can you can not comment. Every urban city has some type of problem and new orleans is no different. We had 160 murders last year; new york had hundreds, but who's counting? The media thrieves over showing negativity, lets do better and rebuild this city.
Posted By Anonymous Ms. Evans, New Orleans, La : 8:31 PM ET
Thank you for doing this. I know you love our city... I was down there for New Years Eve during that week... and I still can't believe the roads... the drivers!!! Lack of police men I see.. other than sections of the city... with police cars just parked everywhere in the same area... Insane...

Almost got hit in my car a few times while driving there... I miss my city... I wish I could go back... but I can't at the moment... so back up north State for me....

I AM OVER IT!! Thank god it is a new year....


Missing my home!!
Posted By Anonymous Micah, Shreveport, LA : 8:33 PM ET
Residents of New Orleans have put up with (and enabled) third-rate politicians, police and schools for too long. Finally, people are starting to rise up and refuse to put up with it anymore. We can let the good times roll AND have a functional city. Harnessing this anger and working for change are a wonderful first step, and it's about d@mn time!
Posted By Anonymous Robbi, New Orleans, LA : 8:37 PM ET
Anderson,

Katrina should have been a wake up call to this country, much like 9/11 was. We weren't prepared for disaster in either situation. And still neither mess has been cleaned up. Don't stop.
Posted By Anonymous Kimi, Bloomington IN : 8:42 PM ET
New Orleans should have been shut down after Katrina and never re opened to the citizens. It seems the mayor really doesn't care about the city and we all know the federal government doesn't care. Keep up the good work Anderson.
Posted By Anonymous Matt: Dallas, Texas : 8:44 PM ET
The land on which New Orleans is situated is not safe to begin with. It's not a practical place for a city. We know that now. When the city was founded they didn't know this. If the spirit of a city is its people, why not cut your losses and found a "new" New Orleans on higher ground?
Posted By Anonymous Steve - Peoria, IL : 9:20 PM ET
I've heard part of the problem is too many unemployed young men roaming the streets. With all of the reconstruction work, I can't understand why these men are unemployed. Part of the rebuilding needs to include jobs for the men and women that stayed in the city.

BTW, Cooper, in your video report it looks like you were riding in the car w/o a seatbelt--gotta buckle up kiddo.
Posted By Anonymous Catherine Houston, TX : 9:20 PM ET
I attended the March today, along with 5000 of my fellow citizens in a display of solidarity among races and classes that is only seen at Saints games and, maybe, Mardi Gras parades. I shed tears more than once. The representative from Mid City articulated some universal feelings: he said we have fear, but we learn to deal with it; we have sadness, but we learn to deal with that too; we have anger, and we are still trying to figure out how to manage that one; and we have a feeling that is never uttered...and that is SHAME. Yes, that is an emotion I am increasingly realizing, that I feel bubble up in my gut when outsiders question my love and loyalty for a city that, for many people, is not only an enigma but not worthy of love, respect, and rebirth. If we can stay focused and ashamed, and if our incompetent "leaders" could feel that shame as well, maybe it would be a turning point.
Posted By Anonymous Caroline Helwick, New Orleans : 9:23 PM ET
I miss New Orleans with all my heart and will return soon. I've dealt with more crime here in Atlanta since I've been here than when I lived in NO.

I just want everyone thinking about visiting the city to do it. The French Quarter is very safe. As well as the other main tourist areas. If you love New Orleans, go down ans fall in love all over again, and help the city at the same time. If you're complaining about New Orleans go down and see what it's really like. You'll be surprised. I've been down 6 times since Katrina and I still love the city more than ever.
Posted By Anonymous Joshua, Atlanta GA : 9:23 PM ET
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