ERROL LABORDE: Why God is on Nagin’s side
During his inauguration speech Ray Nagin revealed something that had his opponents known from the beginning he might have been spared any opposition. God, it turns out, was on Nagin¹s side. “This is much bigger than all of us,” Nagin said. Of his victory. “I’m not that smart. God had his hand in this.”
If God had a candidate in the race I would have thought it might have been Manny “Chevrolet” Bruno whose slogan, “a troubled man for a troubled city,” had the right “voice crying in the wilderness” tone so popular with deities. But the fact that Bruno’s electoral total in the primary barely made it to triple digits proves that he was not the anointed one.
Between the two runoff candidates, Mitch Landrieu and Nagin, I do not think that God’s decision was necessarily anti-Landrieu. Though my theology is dusty my hunch is that God saw Nagin as being better for business, His business. In particular, God reasoned that Nagin returning to City Hall would create more work for St. Jude.
Of all the saints, Jude is a major player in New Orleans. The International Shrine in honor of him is located at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church on N. Rampart Street. More importantly, Jude carries the prestigious title of being the patron saint of hopeless cases.
Now no one is suggesting that Nagin is a hopeless case. It is just that his administration has not lulled us into overconfidence. History will likely say that his tenure was rigidly honest and unpredictable wacky, but before that history can be written there are four more years to experience. We need Jude, so that we can hedge our bets as we hope for the best.
As the mayor tries to get all the lights back on his constituents will be lighting candles. Will Nagin with the help of his friends in high places assure our recovery? Only God knows.
Just thinking about New Orleans
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