Get High On Life: Ready for the Hornets yet? We may be crying tomorrow

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 28, 2002


The Hornets are coming! The Hornets are coming! Ready or not, the Hornets are coming!

That’s right! It looks like the Charlotte Hornets NBA basketball team is coming to New Orleans. I don’t know about you, but I’m as excited about that as I would be about a root canal.

I’m not anti-sports. On the contrary, I love amateur sports and enjoy some professional sports, but am against big, private business (which is what professional franchises are), expecting government to take tax money to satisfy their greed and, in some cases, bad business decisions.

The governor and the legislature has spent more time helping Harrah’s, the Saints, and now the Hornets, than addressing the needs of the taxpayers of Louisiana.

I believe that it’s more blessed to give than to receive, except when the government takes money from poor taxpayers to subsidize the rich, private-owned sports franchises, or any gambling operation. When that happens, it becomes more important to receive. In my opinion, the giving becomes a burden and a curse on the taxpayers. The curse is because all government energy is not directed where it ought to be – providing services to all the people.

A good start would be to concentrate on improving education, attacking crime, fighting illiteracy, and many other needs. That would benefit all of Louisiana.

Last week, the state reported that 75 percent of all juveniles incarcerated in youth detention centers would graduate someday to adult prisons. Maybe the thinking of the political powers is that the 25 percent will get jobs and buy season tickets to the Hornets and Saints games.

The argument for the support of building sports stadiums and financing private business with taxpayers’ money is that it’s good for the economy. Some economists report that contrary to that belief, it has a tendency to depress local economies.

Maybe the whole story was displayed on a sign carried by a fan at a Hornets basketball game in Charlotte: “New Orleans, you may be smiling today, but you will cry later.”

HAROLD KELLER writes this column as part of his affiliation with the Get High on Life religious motivational group. Call him at (985) 652-8477 or write to P.O. Drawer U, Reserve, LA 70084.