Fuse The Rouge Pillar #5
This is the most overarching category that really touches on the previous four themes and takes on all the more importance in light of recent national events. The city needs to do more things to bring our city together as one people – much of this will be symbolic. We need a true “City Park”, just like New York City has. We need to quit appeasing the 17 golfers that play golf at City Park Golf Course on a 9-hole course, and instead use that land to make one great City Park. It is directly in the middle of the city. We can keep one golf hole for historical sake if necessary. Events, festivals, concerts, weddings, picnics, entertainment and on and one would become commonplace in City Park and would be a gathering spot for all people of the parish. The city-parish and BRCC’s new mascot should be the “Tiguar” – a mythical creature that is half tiger and half jaguar, in honor of the two mascots of our two universities. We need to embark on a massive clean-up campaign to reduce litter, unsightly properties, ugly street poles, ugly business signage, etc. And how about we actually finish the new Government Street District. Young entrepreneurs, professionals and families need areas like this district to be attracted to Baton Rouge as a permanent home. Create a roaming video litter police that will actually allow us to enforce our litter laws without engaging people on the street. At $350 a cigarette butt or gum wrapper, the litter will quickly stop. Utilize the help of local businesses as outlined in Theme #4, and have physically able people on need-based government assistance at least get out there and start helping clean up our city. If people have pride in their street, they will not want it soiled with litter, crime or any other anti-social behavior. Encourage neighborhoods to “Get Out” – work out, clean out and watch out. It will combine neighbors getting together in groups to walk for exercise, pick up litter and perform neighborhood crime watch. In the same spirit as the Guardian Rouge, can we explore combining the Baton Rouge and St. George Fire Departments. Just like law enforcement, do we need two overlapping entities providing the same function? Finally, we’re going to put Baton Rouge on one massive diet and exercise program. We are probably one of the most obese cities in not only the country, but the world. And the problem is even more exacerbated in the black community. A healthier population will reduce health care costs, utilization of public resources, increase business productivity, improve education, emotional well-being, etc.