Though the city is in a state of economic upheaval, and many of the buildings are neglected, there is an underlying feeling of need for social change. When different industries with money have come to town, like the movie industry, (the keys to the city are opened wide for these entities, provided that they pay handsomely for their use) it would seem they are providing revenue for the area. It is with some hesitation that funds provided by these groups are not allocated in ways that consider the wellbeing of the city as a whole.
The down town sector has been newly refurbished into a high end consumer plaza. There are top of the line stores and eateries leading along the edge of the river. They provide good means and new opportunities for well-established corporate businesses, however local jobs are the only immediate outcome. The people that are hardest pressed here are those who were born and raised in the area. People whose jobs have become obsolete with the closing of factories, and the changing of the means of production. Here, in Shreveport, Louisiana, it is all too often business as usual, which offers economic advantage to only a small percentage of the populous.
Though our RV was visited by several local people, who wanted to understand our message, the most curious and insightful one was Aria. This young woman had more worthwhile queries than have been presented in quite some time. She talked about growing up in the area, with mentalities that are slow to progress. “If you don’t like Shreveport, you might as well leave, cause it ain’t gonna change”, Aria said. With that kind of doubt placed in the minds of the people, areas like this one need the most assistance in aid in the simulation of new thoughts and ideas. We must remind one another that we are all capable of the transformation, and worthy of support. It is easy to become emotional, or feel repressed / undermined by the current social and economic circumstances, yet the ability to rage against the dying of the light. by -Heron-