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I need your advice...

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; My name is Chuck Edwards, and I have been the Field Announcer (pregame and halftime) for the Saints since 1997. I am also the Public Address Announcer for the VooDoo. I am in the midst of a moral crisis regarding ...

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Old 10-24-2005, 06:26 PM   #1
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I need your advice...

My name is Chuck Edwards, and I have been the Field Announcer (pregame and halftime) for the Saints since 1997. I am also the Public Address Announcer for the VooDoo. I am in the midst of a moral crisis regarding my continued involvement with this organization, and I could use your guidance.

Before I get too deep into this, the thoughts and opinions in this post are mine and mine alone.
I want to make sure that no one currently employed by the New Orleans Saints organization is unfairly accused of putting words in my mouth.

I can speak for myself, thank you.

First, I want to say that everyone from New Orleans and the rest of the Coast are in my thoughts and prayers. I was born, raised, and currently reside in Gulfport, MS, and I share the same frustrations many of you are facing while simply trying to put your lives back together in the wake of Katrina. My house, like many others, is a technicolor nightmare of tarps and other materials, my neighborhood is filled with the sights (and smells) that only a major hurricane can deliver, and I am wading through mountains of paperwork from my insurance company, FEMA, SBA, and numerous creditors. We on the Coast are about a month ahead of New Orleans in our clean-up efforts. I can't tell you that it is a smooth or rapid process. I can tell you that it will slowly get better, so just try to hang in there as best you can.

I have been a Saints fan all of my 36 years, even before I became a gameday employee. I have enjoyed being a small part of this team, even if, during some games and some seasons, finding things to cheer about has been somewhat difficult. My heart sank when I first heard of the possibility of the Saints leaving New Orleans for good. I have spoken to some people in the organization within the past week. Quite frankly, they know about as much as the rest of us. I realize those employees who made the trip to San Antonio have to keep their opinions to themselves, since the Saints are their full-time job, and they can't afford to be job-hunting right now. Quitting the organization in protest is not really an option for most of them.

I, however, am not bound by such restrictions.

My full-time job is with a group of radio stations on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. I never took the Saints job for the money. I can make as much doing a radio remote for one hour as I can being on the sidelines for five hours (including the two hours prior to kickoff). I took the job simply because I love the NEW ORLEANS Saints.

Having said that, I am still unsure if I want to participate in the four games scheduled for Baton Rouge. Part of me wants to work the games out of support for the players and the fans, neither of whom have anything to do with moving the team. But another part of me doesn't want to work another game for this team, or any team, that is owned by a man who would treat his fans with such disregard. I understand business is business, but loyalty, integrity, and doing the right thing should still count for something... even if it means a lower profit margin.

Please, I need your opinion on this. I'm just a gameday employee. My contribution to this franchise is minimal at best, and this team will not collapse if I'm no longer a part of it. But, before I was an employee, I was a FAN. I don't want to feel like I'm selling you out. Because, no matter if this team stays or goes... I still have to look myself in the mirror when it is all over.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,
Chuck Edwards
Field Announcer
New Orleans Saints
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Old 10-24-2005, 07:03 PM   #2
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RE: I need your advice...

My gut feeling says continue on with the Saints in Baton Rouge .

Once the final decision has been made to either relocate the team by Benson and the other owners or to keep them in New Orleans it sounds to me like your answer will be clear .
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Old 10-24-2005, 08:16 PM   #3
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Dear Chuck,

Thank you for being a fan and participant in the Saints on gameday. There are a great many of us who contribute here who would gladly fall on our swords for the franchise. I hope that I speak for some that we would kill to have any positive influence on the fans, the players and those who support them within the Saints organization.

If you feel that your participation positively impacts the quality of experience of the fans who attend the games, then you should continue to make their experience superior.

Iempathize with your conflict over how to display your concern over the current series of developments. Like all of us, you want your method of protest to have impact and meaning.

Many are called but few are chosen. Not participating is an extreme and potentially futile gesture. If the organization didn't ask for or value your opinion before, it won't after this choice. Many successful protests have manifested within the organisation. Participating in Gameday activities in in of itself is not a tacit approval of the policies.

If you feel that you must make a gesture, one possibility is donating your compensation to relief efforts or your favorite charity. You could purchase tickets for displaced residents. I'm sure there are many other possibilities, but my point is to do something positive, not something negative. Make it better for as many people as you can.

And keep the continuity of the excellent experience of Saints Sunday.

Regards,

xan
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Old 10-24-2005, 08:28 PM   #4
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Why leave? Don't you want to be on the field for the franchises last home game?
I am already priing for the trip to Tampa.
People are leaches, someone will fill your spot...
So stay and enjoy the final few miles of this arduous journey
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Old 10-24-2005, 10:53 PM   #5
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You need to be there more than ever during the Miami game. This is the game we will be judged by for either another expansion team in a few years or keeping the Saints outright.

The most important statement of all is when you said, "you would have to look yourself in the mirror". Well how will you look at yourself either way? You are the only one that can judge yourself. We can't and won't attempt to do that for you.

But I will say that for being a Saint's fan for as long as you have, God has reserved a spot for you in Heaven my man, as with all other Saint fans.

The only advice, listen to your heart and you will make the right decision. Screw Benson he can't make any of us change who we are. we all have heart dammit, WE ARE SAINTS FANS!!!!!!

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Old 10-24-2005, 10:57 PM   #6
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I would say that if you feel deep down inside of you that you are in some way betraying the people of New Orleans (which I don't think you are because you're not the one contemplating moving the team), then perhaps you shouldn't participate. However, in my opinion, I dont think that your calling of the game is in any way an insult or a sellout to the fans or the people of the Gulf Coast. You're just trying to do your job at a time when much of your region is devastated, so no, you're not doing anything wrong. Enjoy the game, and try to make it enjoyable for all of us true Saints fans.

P.s.- if you end up not participating in the next few agmes and you happen to see Tom Benson, tell him what you and the rest of the SaintsNation really thinks about his greedy arse.

P.p.s- very impressed with your list of accomplishments, glad to see your still connected with the fans at a time when it seems that nobody at the top of the franchise is....

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Old 10-24-2005, 11:41 PM   #7
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Dear Chuck:

...you are a 36 year-old-man.. you figure it out yourself... save the drama..
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