11 January 2006

A New and Improved "Slap in the Face" Inscription Upon the Andrew Jackson Statue in Jackson Square

Click on image for larger version.

Inscribed upon the base of the Andrew Jackson statue in Jackson Square is the following quote: "The Union Shall and Must Be Preserved." The inscription was not originally on the statue in the newly renovated and renamed (to Jackson Square) Place D'Armes in 1851. Instead, the quote was placed upon the statue a decade later upon orders of Military Governor General Benjamin Butler after Union forces captured New Orleans in May 1862. Butler, nicknamed "The Beast" (for his abhorent, disrespectful actions towards the New Orleans populous--especially women) and "Spoons" (for his habit of stealing valuable silverware from New Orleans homes), had the inscription placed on the statue upon New Orleans' most sacred ground to taunt, insult, and humiliate defiant locals.

Today--post KTMB, a more fitting quote should read "New Orleans Shall and Must be Preserved." Or better yet (as the product of Photoshop 101 shows above), how about an actual quote from September 2005 as insulting and as much a slap to the face of New Orleanians and Louisianians of what was intended by Gen. Butler in 1862: "I Don't Think Anybody Anticipated the Breach of the Levees."

Oh, really? No one anticipated a potential problem keeping the storm surge of Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Borgne, Breton Sound, or Barataria Bay in a hurricane event out of New Orleans and its environs?

The "levees" in the City of New Orleans were not breached--federally designed and built floodwalls failed. Not only is the "nobody anticipated" statement false--it was even botched.

One minute of googling reveals:
June 2002:

September 2002 :
http://www.pbs.org/now/transcript/transcript_neworleans.html

October 2004:
http://magma.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0410/feature5/


So today in the real world and not in my photoshopped fantasyland, "The Union Shall and Must Be Preserved" remains on the base of the statue--still taunting us. Apparently, only certain portions of the union should be preserved . . . and others, oh well.
Comments? Ideas? Contact seymourdfair@gmail.com