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A Word on the Parade Route. This letter appeared in today's TT: Proposed parade route dangerous

Regarding the proposal to change the Alexandria Mardi Gras parade route, I have a couple of questions from a mother of two small children.

Why change the parade route and put it in the middle of known gang goings-on? Am I the only one who sees the hanging shoes off the telephone lines? Doesn’t everyone know that’s what they mean? How can people expect me to bring my small children anywhere around that? Why change the parade route off Texas Avenue? Because people are complaining that they want the parade to go right in front of their house? That is ridiculous, when the problems of the parade can be solved by a little more police involvement. Think about it, Central Louisiana, honestly, why put a parade in the middle of gangs and problem areas? So we can be pick-pocketed? Or someone gets shot for being on the wrong property? Or how about when a baby gets hurt? Change the route and risk a lot more problems. Leave well alone, and keep this mother with safe sound and mind so I can go enjoy myself at city get-together’s.

Brittany E. Bonds, Pineville

Although I am sure Mrs. Bonds' intentions are good, this letter is a little reckless and hyperbolic. She paints a nightmarish picture of a Mardi Gras parade down Lee and Bolton. I am in favor of bringing the parade downtown, because I think a properly planned Mardi Gras parade can do more for downtown than it does for Texas Avenue. However, I understand that many people perceive Bolton Avenue and Lee Street as "bad areas," and this perception will not change unless the infrastructure changes. (For more on this: read thechickdowntown's comment under the Slatkin/Lawson interview thread). Letters like Mrs. Bonds' should remind us that we have a lot to do in order to rehab this area. To that end, let's compromise and move the parade down Jackson Street. Texas Avenue to the Riverfront Center.