By Shedrick Roy Jr
This Saturday is Election Day and the Council-at-Large race is, in my opinion, the most important decision we have to make. If you know me or follow me on social media, you already know I am a Dr. Joe Bouie supporter – personally and professionally. What you may not know, or understand very well, is why, in this race, I am why I am so relentless in trying to gain support for his candidacy.
As a former, two-time SUNO SGA President, I worked with Doc and saw, firsthand, how he works to effectively solve community problems. He has taught and mentored thousand of students and, when the state tried so hard to close SUNO, the only 4-year institution of its kind that has helped educate so many in our community, it was Dr Bouie who led the effort to save it.
Doc is also well-known for his drug treatment efforts in New Orleans. He cofounded the state’s very first Drug Court, a model that’s still in use today. I don’t know about you but I get angry every time someone mentions how this “opiod crisis” is the worst drug problem we’ve seen in this country. We ALL know what the “war on drugs” in the 1980’s and 90’s were like for our community – it’s an insult to the many of us who were directly impacted by the crack epidemic.
And, of course, there’s the other issues he’s tackled throughout his career: equal pay for women, he was the 1st to champion the $15 minimum wage effort, fought to keep our children’s schools from being built on toxic sites, persuaded republican legislators to stop the defunding of the council on aging, and more. The man has fought for equality his entire career.
Which brings me to his opponent, Helena Moreno, a stark contrast. By now you’ve heard how she gave one of her Tulane Legislative scholarships to the son of Greg Buisson, her former political consultant, instead of a qualified student in her district. (Or the city of New Orleans for that matter.) Well today, I’m scrolling Facebook and I come across this video of Moreno explaining her decision. She very sarcastically said, “I guess there’s just not that many parents (in district 93) sending their kids to Tulane University.” Click or tap here to view the video.
Y’all. Is this woman serious????
Helena Moreno actually said that there were no other students in her district qualified for that scholarship. As a St. Aug alum (St Aug, McDonogh 35 & J.S. Clark are in her district, by the way) I am extremely offended that this State Representative thinks the parents and students in district 93 aren’t Tulane University caliber. This is the same district that was represented by the late Rev. Avey C. Alexander, the Father of the Civil Rights Movement here in New Orleans. Not only that, the student she gave the $150k scholarship to is the son of the very man that Sidney Torres hired to run his anti-Desiree Charbonnet campaign (Not that I am endorsing her candidacy). Imagine what would happen if Moreno wins and has the authority to award city contracts. Will Sidney Torres and the anti-Desi folks automatically get what they’re after? Or will there be “not that many qualified contractors in New Orleans” so they’ll go outside the city just like her scholarship? We cannot take that risk!
Also, Helena Moreno voted to remove the City Council’s seat from the Sewerage and Water Board, essentially removing their accountability. Question – are you happy there were no checks and balances governing the Sewerage & Water Board?
Last thing – has anyone seen Moreno’s platform? If you say yes, you’re nose is growing because she doesn’t have one. The most well-funded candidate can’t even be bothered to develop a solid plan for the city but expects you to just hire her because she read our news 10 years ago? Dr Bouie, on the other hand, has the most impressive platform. I’ve ever seen from a candidate in any race in a long time. It addresses all the major issues in the city and provides specific ways to achieve specific results. Results that will lead to economic equity for everyone in New Orleans.
They say the greatest indicator of future performance is past performance. When you compare Dr Bouie’s and Helena Moreno’s past performance, it is clear that Doc is the choice for us. At the very end add what I always say. Saving New Orleans is on us & if we don’t do it for us, let’s do it for OUR CHILDREN!!!