The excitement of Mardi Gras is tempered by anxiety over violent crime in New Orleans
Even after violence disrupted a glittering weekend celebration, revellers continued to party on Tuesday morning.Thousands of revellers gathered in the French Quarter and lined miles of parade routes on Tuesday as New Orleans’ annual Carnival season reached its jubilant peak. This year’s Mardi Gras celebration was tempered this year by concerns about violent crime and political unrest.
In several areas of the city, celebrations started early in the morning. In order to get people ready for Mardi Gras, members of The North Side Skull and Bones gang spread out throughout the Treme neighbourhood in skeleton costumes.
Parade spectators had already staked out locations along the St. Charles Avenue parade route as the sun began to rise, peeking through gaps in the gloomy sky. Smells of barbecue filled the Central Business District.
Even though violence disrupted a flashy weekend parade, revellers weren’t deterred. Sunday night during a parade, gunfire broke out, killing one youngster and injuring four others, including a 4-year-old girl. Mansour Mbodj, 21, was soon detained by police for illegally carrying a weapon, and the accusation was then increased to second-degree murder.
On Monday, officials emphasised that the shooting was an isolated incident.Roz Walker, 55, said, “It’s depressing, but it won’t stop me from coming. Along with her pal Tracy including a 4-year-old girl. Police quickly arrested Mansour Mbodj, 21, for illegally carrying a weapon, then upgraded the charge to second-degree murder.Officials stressed Monday that the shooting was an isolated event.
“It’s discouraging, but it’s not going to stop me from coming,” said Roz Walker, 55. She and her friend Tracy Dunbar are Baton Rouge residents who were among the crowd awaiting the parades of the Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club and the Rex Organization. They have been visiting New Orleans on Mardi Gras for decades.We’ve been coming to Mardi Gras for more than 40 years, and we’ve never been in any kind of scenario at all, she claimed.Houston resident Ken Traylor, who was taking part in his first Mardi Gras, was aware of the gunshot but chose to ignore it. He merely suggested that people exercise caution when in their surroundings. Nowadays, events take place everywhere.
Dissatisfaction with New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell has been exacerbated by crime. She comfortably won reelection in 2021, but has since dealt with a variety of political issues, such as criticism over violence, the delayed progress of significant roadway repairs, and inquiries into her personal usage of a city-owned French Quarter apartment.
A recall petition that was started last year is about to expire on Wednesday. Eileen Carter, one of the organisers, expressed her belief in the movement.People will be canvassing the march routes, according to Carter. That has been really beneficial to us.
An online video of Cantrell waving with her middle finger as a parade passed by a city reviewing stand over the weekend added fuel to the political turbulence. Uncertainty surrounded the gesture’s origin. The Associated Press’s request for comment was not answered by the mayor’s press office. Little was revealed in a statement provided to The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate.
According to a prepared statement from a representative, Gregory Joseph, Mardi Gras is a time when satire and humour are prominently displayed. The statement read, “The city has been enjoying a safe and healthy Carnival,” and it added the mayor was eager to keep the celebration going.Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday, is the culmination of Carnival season, which officially begins each year on Jan. 6, the 12th day after Christmas, and closes with the beginning of Lent on Ash Wednesday.
New Orleans’ raucous celebration is the nation’s most well-known, but the holiday is also celebrated throughout much of Louisiana and the Gulf Coast. Mobile, Alabama, lays claim to the oldest Mardi Gras celebration in the country.