Support Little Red Schoolhouse’s outdoor classroom

Funds to purchase four benches, each 6 feet wide, as a solid start to their classroom.  These benches will be anchored into the ground in the front of the building, along St. Philip Street.  As such, they need to be solid, safe, and attractive.  At approx. $500 each, we need a total of $2000 to fully fund this project.  
We need your help in meeting this funding goal.  Between Patio Planters members, Plessy School parents, and caring neighbors, we are confident we can have this classroom in place by late September.  Please consider giving whatever you can for this cause. Plessy garden

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Save Our Sponge Concert Tonight

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On Thursday, February 1, 2018, Woodlands Conservancy will host a celebration of 17 years of the nonprofit land trust organization’s work to Save Our Sponge, the 800 plus acres of bottomland hardwood forest serving as a protective stormwater and wind barrier for the Greater New Orleans area.
The Patron Party begins at 6 p.m. with gourmet appetizers and spirits while listening to music by Harry Hardin’s Jazz Quartet and perusing an array of Silent Auction items. Patron Party admission includes VIP seating at the Save Our Sponge Concert and complimentary cocktails throughout the evening.
Doors open at 7 p.m. for guests arriving for the Save Our Sponge Concert. The SOS Concert begins at 7:30 p.m. with Tom McDermott on the Steinway Grand Piano in the Concert Hall followed by Lost Bayou Ramblers.
Proceeds benefit Woodlands Conservancy, a nonprofit, 501 (c) (3) land trust organization

“the smallest possible gesture”

This is what a friend wrote today, as Lee is removed from his place on our city streets, the last of the 4 main monuments defiling our public streets that were placed to strengthen the white supremacy movement in the decades after the Civil War. (There are, however, 3 more Confederate statues of much less prominence that still need removal. Still, as my pal says beautifully here: we are beginning to approach the truth.)

…Black children can expect and, by every measure, will receive, substantially worse treatment than their white peers within the educational system, the healthcare system, the policing and justice systems, the housing and financial markets, in terms of their prospective employment and earnings. Hell, they will have a harder time on Tinder and Grinder.
Parents of black children already get to explain why this is and try their best to prepare their children to navigate these evidence-based realities.
One less white supremacist being honored in the street is actually the smallest possible gesture available that we can bestow on these children.

One less statue doesn’t change these realities. But it begins to approach the truth. There has never been truth and reconciliation in this country, so we keep recycling white supremacy into different iterations, instead of dismantling it (Jim Crow! Mass Incarceration!).

We can’t begin to face white supremacy without truth telling. And most Americans (of all backgrounds) are not taught the fullness of the truth about the founding of this country or how it prospered. Most aren’t taught what slavery entailed, or how it persists in different forms today. Taking down Lee is simply acknowledging these truths.

Writers Resist New Orleans

Writers Resist New Orleans is being held in collaboration with PEN America, as part of a international day of readings championing freedom of speech, and the power of expression to change the world.

Representatives from New Orleans’ diverse writer’s community will be reading selections from great political, activist, and literary works of our past including words from:

Martin Luther King, Jr
James Baldwin
Audre Lorde
Allen Ginsberg
Angela Davis

and many more to come.

We hope to provide a space for the New Orleans community to come together during this time of national anxiety. We view this as an opportunity to connect, seek solace, and rebuild. We welcome ALL.

A note from the national organizers:
Writers Resist is not affiliated with a political party. We wish to bypass direct political discourse in favor of an inspired focus on the future, and how we, as writers, can be a unifying force for the protection of Democracy. In order for us to heal and move forward, individually and as a nation, we believe people need something to be for in this anxious moment. The only thing we “resist” is that which attacks or seeks to undermine those most basic principles of freedom and justice for all.

http://writersresist.org/

WATCHING PEOPLE MOURN AN AMERICA THAT NEVER WAS

I found this one of the best things I’ve read. Part of that is because it reminds me of the truth in the fractured, violent and yet sweet place that I call home. It reminds me that we can all show up for the Saints games, but not all of us get to hang out in the fancy bars afterward without sidelong glances being thrown. That Mardi Gras is a street thing, but some of those krewes are locked up tight.  Or, that job we disdain or the apartment we moan about is not open to anyone and everyone. And the other part of it is that Ruffin writes simply and poignantly and with fire in his veins.

 

We would have laughed in the face of your naïveté if we didn’t like you so much. It was sweet the way your eyes widened as your understanding of what we saw in our everyday lives played across your face. You were dismayed that your own blood didn’t care about the lofty constitutional precepts of justice and the pursuit of happiness for all. Your recognition of our separateness saddened us. It was like watching a child learn the truth about Santa Claus.

 

Maurice Ruffin’s piece

Second Line For Equal Justice by John Calhoun – GoFundMe

My name is John Calhoun, and I am working with over a dozen Social Aid and Pleasure Clubs and the Orleans Public Defenders Office to plan a Second Line For Equal Justice to raise awareness about the crisis our public defenders office is facing and to encourage our city and state governments to adequately fund indigent defense.

Source: GoFundMe