“We believe we have a great plan in place for all the citizens of New Orleans, as the city and its new administration ushers in an era of peace and prosperity,” said Cheryl Landrieu. “We are especially pleased that all elected officials will be sworn in at Gallier Hall, in true celebration of ‘One Team – One Fight – One Voice – One City.’ ”Seems like an innocuous enough empty phrase at first glance. But this kind of "one team" jingo is, for my taste, a little too close to the corporate speak favored by new age management gurus and motivational speakers as a soft bullying technique designed to marginalize dissenting voices. I find it condescending and threatening enough in a work setting but in the context of democratic governance, it's simply intolerable.
The fact is, as a citizenry, we are not actually "one voice" but many. And those many voices have many different views on things not all of which the Mayor will or should agree with but all of which he should at least acknowledge have a right to exist. It's fine if he wants to implement his own program but beating his dissenters over the head with an admonition to shut up and get with the "one voice" says to them that they have no place even making an argument and thus attempts to deny the existence of a very basic political right.
You might think I'm making a big deal out of nothing here but, remember, this is the same guy who only yesterday referred to the heads of the local NAACP, Silence is Violence, Families and Friends of Louisiana's Incarcerated Children, and Voice of the Ex Offender as "brick throwers" simply because they, quite accurately, asserted that his Police Task Force was a farcical political stunt.
Like I said before, Mitch has every right to choose whichever police chief he wants and to consult with whomever he wants to consult with in making that decision. He also doesn't have to take any advice from anyone who doesn't want to be on his "one team" But not everybody has to be on the "one team" and those who aren't have every bit as much right to be here as he does. Because this "one city" belongs to everybody even if the entitled and the powerful choose to pretend otherwise.