25 Stories That Made Shreveport And Bossier Mad In 2016
The year 2016 has been a tough year for a lot of people. We've lost a lot of great people, locally and worldwide, we've struggled with natural and man-made disasters, and our political process divided our nation, parishes, and communities like never before.
It's safe to say a lot of people will be happy to see 2016 go away.
But before we put a bow on this year, we should take some time to look back on things. Most of the time, end-of-the-year lists are about the "Best" of the year, or the "Top __" things of the year. However right now, we're going to do the opposite. We're going to explore the stories that fired people up locally.
We're going to skip over national and statewide stories that fired people up, and focus on the stories that Shreveport and Bossier are RESPONSIBLE for. Or at least the stories centered around the area.
These are the stories that got people talking, debating, arguing, or even just feigning outrage on the internet...these are the stories that made Shreveport/Bossier mad in 2016:
So which one go you? Taylor Swift moving to town, Matthew McConaughey talking about women in Shreveport, Step Brothers 2 filming here, Samuel L. Jackson talking about Bossier City, or Bass Pro Shop closing? There was no shortage on social media hoaxes for the Shreveport/Bossier area in 2016, and it seemed each one made people more angry than the last.
There are a lot of people excited about this idea, but there are a lot of people who don't like this idea either. Some people who want to fight the current ordinance came off as angry, and the people who want the ordinance to stay in play seem angry at the challengers to the rules. Either way, there were angry people.
Look, any time someone kills a pet, people get mad. When it happens on video, people get REALLY mad.
The charges included failure to do proper background checks on employees, a lack of certified providers, and even leaving a child behind in Baton Rouge during a field trip.
There were A LOT of closings around Shreveport in 2016, and each one seemed to hit people a little differently. Some business closings even seemed to make some people happy. But when the word got out that the Shreveport Country Club was closing, no one was happy.
Honestly, I don't think this one even needs anything written about it.
This story got people on both sides fired up. After the video was released, more of the story on those who were involved came out, and as people pieced together what happened, sides were taken quickly. Some defended the casino hard, and others took the guard's side. The social media comment section wars on this one were deep.
This story blew up fast, burned bright, and flamed out. People got really fired up about this story right away, taking sides, and fighting hard online over various interviews that were conducted with both sides of the story. Then after a couple of days, it was like it never happened.
Tragedy didn't wait long to strike in 2016. In January a stabbing in front of Rockin Rodeo in Bossier City cost a man his life. After that incident, things changed drastically for this establishment, and we'll talk more about that later on the list.
They were definitely put up to start conversations, but some of the conversations were just angry ones. Two different billboards went up around Shreveport, totally unconnected, that cause two different public outcries. First was a billboard put up downtown in April that read "Politically Correct" upside-down then in July it was the "Stop The Killing" billboards. Both were meant to specifically deliver a message, and they were clearly received, but with hostility from some.
In April a fight broke out in Downtown Shreveport that led to a stampede of hundreds of juveniles through the streets. Some of the kids nearly ran into cars as they ran into the street. There were various videos of the incident circulated on social media, and nearly all of the comments online were critical of those involved.
When this news broke, there was a lot of negative reaction. Not so much that K-Mart was leaving (if there were that many people upset to see them go, they'd probably still be in business) but it was more about the idea that ANOTHER store was leaving. It could have been any retailer, and people would have questioned why businesses can't seem to stay open. One of the other large complaints stemmed from ANOTHER large, empty structure being left for dead in the middle of one of our communities.
Hey, Whole Foods is now open in Shreveport, so everyone can calm the hell down.
Earlier this year, the frustration is the Whole Foods project boiled over when it was noted that the Whole Foods logos were being taken down from their project site. Due to the fact that the project had been slowed, wrapped in rumors, and people were getting antsy, this was a powder-keg moment. The questions about the signs coming down created a mass panic from Whole Foods fans, and even elicited responses from Whole Foods corporate team, and Shreveport's Mayor.
This summer, no one could escape Pokemon Go! The mobile video game that actually got kids to venture outside and walk around swept the nation, and the Shreveport area. But it wasn't all fun and games, when a couple of local kids were mugged while playing the game.
It read like something out of a big budget crime movie staring Robert De Niro...the former Sheriff of Bossier Parish is going on trial for corruption, when the star witness against him is found dead on an oilfield road from a gunshot wound, and the coroner doesn't rules out "foul play". After the first witness died, the other witness in the case completely changed their story, and the case was dropped.
After a murder took plane in their parking lot in January, Rockin' Rodeo could not sustain themselves through the summer, leading to their closure in June. The establishment enjoyed a strong 18-year run in Bossier City, that came to an end in 2016.
This one still gets people fired up...honestly, it gets me a little fired up. Being a good human shouldn't have rules and regulations, but in Downtown Shreveport it does! Seems like you have to be careful when you're trying to help others, because there's always some busybody out there looking to take issue with what you're doing.
For a story that didn't affect everyone to make the Top 10 on this list is impressive. Mostly because the story was being talked about by everyone, even if they didn't have to deal with it. The idea that there were going to be two giant objects being moved at an incredible slow rate through town seemed to be a trigger for a lot of people. Whether they were really mad, or just having a good laugh about it, everyone seemed like they wanted to take shots at the Super-Loads.
This one riled up people on both sides. There are people who felt like the defacing of the monument was the worst thing that happened this year, and there were people who felt like the fact that he monument still stands is a slap in the face to their life. Either way, this hot button issues led to an increase in flame-wars online.
Man, people really don't want that Wal-Mart. There were fights over this for months, even as meetings were changed, and moved, and delayed, like the decision makers didn't want to talk about it. Which, from the outside, didn't seem like it mattered, because they already had their mind made up...Wal-Mart was coming, no matter what the peasants said.
This one will still get people into fighting mood. It's actually a story that pre-dates 2016, but the twists and turns of the saga through the year kept people on edge. This is probably one that will KEEP going too.
Clown madness swept the US earlier this year, as rumors of clowns dragging children into the woods evolved into local high school students being suspended over threats. There was anger generated from the national stories that then spiraled into near-panic around our area once these stories started to break.
The Spring floods across the Ark-La-Tex made national headlines, but the echos of the floods, and negative responses, were only talked about locally. Whether it was FEMA's delayed response, scammers taking advantage of people, local resident's being robbed, or the loss of vehicles experienced by local residents. Even after the flood waters retreated, the problems didn't. Which led to building anger.
This story has been brewing for a few years now, and is far from over, but the way a lot of people are looking at it, time's up. Where are the jobs Elio Motors should be bringing to the GM Plant in Shreveport they now call home? Shreveport elected officials are both calling this into question the moves of Elio, while others continue to defend them. Though it's unclear what Elio's plan is, one thing is clear, Shreveport resident's aren't happy about the lack of results.