By Ariella Cohen
It was a week before Hurricane Katrina’s sixth anniversary and the prevailing mood of the Gentilly town hall meeting was frustration.
A tired looking man asked Mayor Mitch Landrieu, the event’s host, why the city still hadn’t repaired flood-damaged roads in his neighborhood. An 80-year-old woman stood up to say a that drug dealers had set up shop in the overgrown vacant lots behind her house, she said. A day earlier, she said, gunshots killed one man and injured another on her block. Another senior citizen rose to implore the mayor to put recovery money toward projects that create jobs for young men in his community. Many begged the mayor to help bring more shops, particularly grocery stores, to the area.