This letter was printed in the New Orleans Times-Picayune of 11 December 2005. I saw it pasted up in several places around town. I added the photos. You see a lot of French flags in Louisiana. These days that's often a bit of a political statement. New Orleans was a "Blue" city in the last presidential election.
Greetings from Louisiana! We are shopping for new owners, and we immediately thought of you! Our present rulers haven't been taking very good care of us and we are looking for a better deal. They are spending all our money in a place called Iraq (somewhere in the Middle East). We thought that perhaps you might want to revisit an old land deal you made long ago.
If you've been reading the papers lately, you may have noticed that we have had a few problems with "water". No, we're not offering you a deal on a damaged water park. (Although that's what it looks like from the air.) Seriously, we need help, and fast.
Some things you might like here:
1. We named the state after your King Louis
2. We named the city after your city, Orleans
3. We have lots of French names on the streets
4. We still have Napoleonic law (maybe you can explain it to us!)
5. A lot of our citizens speak French (the accent will grow on you)
6. We like French food and wine
What we can offer you:
1. a toehold (rather wet!) on the continent
2. an incredible port
3. Lots of oil and gas
4. Lots of restaurants
6. Mardi Gras (you won't believe what we do with this!)
7. Some of the most beautiful houses in the world (very, very wet)
What we need from you is simple:
1. Wetland redevelopment
2. New levees
3. Lots of new houses (but we want them to look old like the ones we lost)
4. We need schools and hospitals rebuilt
5. If you insist, we wouldn't mind some more outdoor cafes like you folks are famous for.
Please think this over carefully. Our current owners are so busy in other countries, they might not even notice if you come down here and take a look around. We'll put you up in grand style in a place we call "The French Quarter" (yeah, really!) and you can have lunch at a place we built for your very own Napoleon, which we call (you guessed it!) Napoleons". You'll be right at home. [Napoleon House, right]
Oh, just remember, we would like the levees and the wetlands taken care of ASAP, sometime just after lunch if not sooner.
A homeowner in New Orleans