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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: U.S. | Arts + Action | Racial Justice
Mardi Gras in New Orleans - The Black Indian Tradition and struggles with oppression.
Belden "Noonie Man" Batiste joins WTUL News and Views' DJ I'm Under The Bus on Mardi Gras Eve to discuss issues of cultural and economic oppression of the Mardi Gras Indian culture. Mardi Gras Day is symbolically the most important day for New Orleans Black Indians.
[ Audio: Audio 21:06 ]
Noonie Man rhetorically asks why money that pours into the City of New Orleans by tourists attracted to the City through promotions featuring Black Indians does not trickle down to the people who create the culture? Why does the City of New Orleans charge three times more for social aid and pleasure clubs to have an annual second line than an "establishment" parade that runs just as long and requires just as much security?
This look at New Orleans through the lens of one it's culture bearers is a captivating interview that not only captures the spirit that keeps the Black Indian tradition alive, but also pulls the covers off of a City that disingenuously wears equity and resilience on it's arm as a selling point.