Are well over a hundred homicidal maniacs in New Orleans this year alone murderers, or simply advertising executives for the Chocolate City?

According to Mayor Ray Nagin, the 117 killings this year alone are not murders as much as “branding” for The Big Easy:

Mayor Ray Nagin said he worries that killings send the message that the city is dangerous, but the news also “keeps the New Orleans brand out there.” …

… “It’s not good for us, but it also keeps the New Orleans brand out there, and it keeps people thinking about our needs and what we need to bring this community back. So it is kind of a two-edged sword,” he said, according to a station transcript.

It must look like Mardi Gras inside this guy’s head, with plenty of beads rolling around.

“It keeps people thinking about our needs and what we need to bring this community back.” You most immediate need is sane human beings, and things like this aren’t exactly going to have them lining up to move in or visit.

Normally, in the advertising world, associating murders with a business you’re pitching isn’t the kind of “branding” you’re seeking to put out there. Big city politics must be different.

At least the New Orleans Board of Tourism has a new catchy slogan at their disposal — “McNagin’s: I’m killin’ it!” should do the trick.

And now a word from Mayor Ray Nagin, for the New Orleans Chamber of Commerce:

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“Killing is our business, and business is good!”

(apologies to Major Payne)

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