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Bouquets & Brickbats 

They get what they deserve

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The Home Builders Association of Greater New Orleans

has extended its Celebrity Shrimp Boot Fundraiser for two weeks. Boots decorated by the likes of Sean Payton, the Manning brothers and Emeril Lagasse will be raffled Oct. 23 at the Shops at Canal Place to benefit the Gulf Oil Spill Relief Fund. To buy a chance at a boot, visit www.neworleanshomeshows.com and click "Interior Design Show."



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Vera Warren-Williams and Jennifer Turner,

the founder and manager of the Community Book Center on Bayou Road, were given the Toni Cade Bambara Award for Cultural Leadership Oct. 1 at the New Orleans Afrikan Film and Arts Festival. The Community Book Center, a shop dedicated to African-American history and writings, celebrated its 25th anniversary this year as a community center welcoming readings, book clubs and performances.



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Jason Berry,

a noted local writer, received the Moses Berkman Memorial Journalism Award from Trinity College in Hartford, Conn., for his ongoing investigation into sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. Berry, author of Lead Us Not Into Temptation, has covered the scandal for nearly two decades (including in the pages of Gambit), and his book and subsequent documentary film Vows of Silence has set the standard for reporting on the issue.



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Sen. David Vitter

debuted an ad this week accusing his opponent, Rep. Charlie Melancon, of being soft on illegal immigration. It not only misrepresented Melancon's record, but the images — brown-skinned men coming through a chainlink fence — were pure race-baiting. The Louisiana Hispanic Chamber of Commerce called it "demeaning" and "racist," and The Washington Post pointed out Louisiana actually has one of the lowest number of undocumented workers per capita in the nation.

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