NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana – Mayor Mitch Landrieu (D) says residents of his city left because of monuments dedicated to Civil War-era icons.
In a press scrum, Landrieu told the media that the Confederate monuments, which he is in the final stages of removing, “have run people out of the city.”
“But I will say this for people that are interested in the cost,” Landrieu said.
“The cultural and economic and the spiritual loss to this city for having those statues up that have run people out of the city,” Landrieu claimed. “The great migration that sent some of our best and brightest to places across the country that we don’t have the benefit of has been incredible.”
Historians, in the past, have said that the opposite is true of New Orleans, however, arguing that the city attracts tourists and residents because of its rich history and public museum-like displays.
Landrieu made the statement hours before the City began removing one of the most famous monuments, a statue of General Robert E. Lee at Lee Circle. Other monuments already removed by the Landrieu Administration include the Battle at Liberty Place, Jefferson Davis, and the P.G.T. Beauregard Monuments.
Landrieu’s comments were made despite no evidence showing such a migration in the last decade due to the Civil War-era monuments.
There has been, however, a growing crime problem in New Orleans. Before Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans suffered from widespread murder, shootings and burglaries. In years following Katrina, the city had gotten safer.
More than a decade later, New Orleans has slowly creeped to pre-Katrina crime levels. This year, the city’s murder rate has spiked 70 percent compared to last year, as well as an increase in assaults. The city is facing a larger opioid epidemic as drug traffickers feel as the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) remains understaffed.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart Texas. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.