News » Bouquets & Brickbats: local heroes and zeroes

The Best and the Worst of the Week

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Nonesuch Records
has donated $1 million to Habitat for Humanity International from sales of Our New Orleans, a benefit compilation CD comprised of New Orleans jazz and blues music. The gift will be used to aid those affected by hurricanes along the Gulf Coast. A portion of those funds will be earmarked to help provide housing, in partnership with musicians and others who lost their homes, via the New Orleans Habitat Musicians' Village being built by New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity.

Southern Comfort,
created more than a century ago in New Orleans, has launched the SoCo Music Fund to raise awareness and money for the city's musicians and music culture. Eight free "Start the Music Up" short films can be viewed online (www.socomusicfund.org), and anyone who donates $10 or more will receive a soundtrack CD featuring local artists speaking, performing and explaining New Orleans' unique musical heritage. Donations will go to Habitat for Humanity and the New Orleans Musicians Hurricane Relief Fund.

Mayor Ray Nagin
cavalierly referred to Ground Zero in New York City as "a hole in the ground" that New Yorkers haven't fixed after five years — and later defended the comment. Nagin uttered the gaffe in an interview with CBS News' 60 Minutes in response to a question about why New Orleans had not removed all the flooded-out automobiles from its streets on the date of the interview. In typical fashion, Nagin callously hurt others by using glibness as a pretext for his own incompetence — and inability to admit failure.

District Attorney Eddie Jordan
petulantly stormed out of an interview on ABC's Nightline in response to questions from reporter Brian Ross about his office's glaring failures and the resulting impact on the quality of life — particularly the crime rate — in the city. Instead of addressing the issue head on, Jordan fumed that Ross' question was "stupid." In truth, Ross simply asked Jordan about a comment by U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales that New Orleans needs, among other things, "a local prosecutor who is doing his job."

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