New Orleans Observations (6)

Yesterday afternoon I took the time to stand in the warm sun and contemplate yet another Mardi Gras parade as it passed by.  Three things occurred to me.

Firstly, even though each parade consists of different krewe’s, each parade is exactly the same, without any significant variation.  The big assed police vehicle first, school and academy marching bands, majorettes, floats pulled by tractors – rinse & repeat.  So once you have seen 3 or 4 parades you have largely seen them all.

Secondly, as I observed in earlier posts, virtually every marching band consists almost exclusively of Afro-American children.  In the parades that I have seen, there has been may be one or two anglo saxon children within the marching band groups and I have now seen one school marching band/majorette combination that was white.  However overwhelmingly the kids walking the entire route, sweating, puffing, stuffed into hideous uniforms are Afro-American and almost without exception the people who are on the floats, including the prince, princesses, maids and general helpers are white.

Thirdly, when you walk through back streets and connecting alleys, you get a view inside of a number of restaurant kitchens.  After a few days of this, as well as eating in a few restaurants now, a very high percentage (80%+) of the kitchen staff and the serving staff are Afro-Americans and the vast majority of the people eating in the restaurants are white.

It struck me that inadvertently, this is probably a fairly representative view (in a very general sense) of America.  I want to think this through a bit more.


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