Why I Return to New Orleans
"In those neighborhoods—if you listen carefully enough—beneath the warmth and hospitality and stories of human struggle and resiliency, you will also hear a more negative note. There’s a feeling of frustration in New Orleans that sometimes comes close to real anger. New Orleanians may not be able to recite the precise statistics and dollar amounts, but they know full well, how vital the mouth of the Mississippi River is to our whole nation’s economy. They know about the trillions of dollars worth of oil, gasoline, grain, seafood, and industrial products that flow through New Orleans—generating profit and prosperity in the rest of the United States. And they know just how little of that profit and prosperity stay in New Orleans.
In other words—if we define a just society as one where every person has reasonably equal access to the fruits of their own efforts and labors—then New Orleans is the perfect case study in what’s unjust about our society."
Originally delivered as a sermon on November 14, 2010, by the Reverend Dennis McCarty at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Columbus, Indiana.