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Monday
Jul192010

Living In the Land Of Anybody But "King" Adrian Fenty

This morning, the minute I stepped out of my house a woman was getting out of a van. She had on a giant green and white sticker on her suit lapel. A "FENTY" sticker. And I was coming out of the house where my landlady had a giant ANYONE BUT FENTY sign for DC Council Chairman Vincent Gray in the front yard.

The woman quickly asked me if I was registered to vote and I told her yes. Then she shouted, "We need your vote in September. Vote Fenty!"

No joke.

Considering how I can't talk to anyone I know about Fenty without them either flying into a spew of explitives or explaining to me the depth of every Fenty-based conspiracy in town I'm going to gather he really needs my vote.

But he's not going to get it.

More after the jump.

I only recently moved to Washington, D.C., so I'm still getting acclimated to the local politics. Like other cities where I've lived before, D.C. is pretty much a one-party town, yet it is never lacking for political drama. The not-really-fun part of living in one-party towns is that usually the one-party in charge (and this doesn't matter if you're in the Democratic stronghold of St. Louis City or the Republican bedrock of Bakersfield, Calif.), the party in power gets rather complacent at times. Golden Boys and Wonder Women are plucked from the ranks who've politely waited their turn for ascendancy. There's a lot of back slapping and the party out of power is so ineffectual they might as well be a myth that the ruling class tells their children about at night.

Fenty was one of those Golden Boys who happily ascended to the throne of mayor of D.C. And the common complaint is that he does treat it like a throne. I can't find a reliable poll online to back it, but aside for a few folks who are enamored with gentrification, I don't know anyone voting for Fenty. Sure. I see the signs in some yards. But actual people? People who I meet on the street? The woman with the sticker in front of my house this morning was the first actual Fenty supporter I'd spoken to since I moved here.

Everyone I know is taking as many shots as they can at the Boy King. Spreading their own whisper campaign of horror stories. It's not that people are in love with either of Fenty's opponents. People are kind of lukewarm over Vincent Gray. I don't know that much yet about Leo Alexander. But it's as if there was a meeting of the minds, and word on the street is "Anyone but Fenty."

My landlady isn't supporting Fenty and she said she had her reasons, but the one that just did it for her was the whole boondoggle over the baseball stadium tickets. When Fenty and the Council were feuding his office had initially refused to turn over the council's baseball tickets to those horrid Washington National games. The tickets were already designated for the council. The deal had been secured before Fenty even came to power. But he threw a big stink over them and wouldn't turn them over.

"That was just petty," she said.

Then there was the cabby who drove me home last night who hijacked a conversation between myself and a friend to bellow about how horrible the city water tastes (and MY GOD, it tastes horrible in some places). He then went into an anti-Fenty tirade about how he heard Fenty's people wanted to pull money that could have been used for water purification to use for street sweeping. Then he nearly popped a vein screaming about the trolley they're building on H Street. "WHY WOULD THEY SPEND MONEY ON A DAMN TROLLEY! HOW DOES A TROLLEY CLEAN OUR WATER!?!?!"

And that’s just the tip of the Fenty Hate Iceberg. There's the whole controversy over the state of D.C.'s schools and the controversial tenure of School Chancellor Michelle Rhee who's about as vehemently hated as she's celebrated. Fenty appointed her after he took over the city schools. (That is one woman who's not afraid to fire everybody.) But Fenty is hitching his wagon to Rhee's successes, essentially saying that he and Rhee are a package deal. But I didn't know her name was on the ticket. (It's not.) It also doesn't help that as Fenty is doing his "Me and Rhee" thing, test scores are still problematic.

There are the people who feel like Fenty abandoned them or stabbed them in the back (including people in his own ward). Then there's the mixed feelings over gentrification and where all the money goes. Which is further compounded by a poorer black working class that feels neglected in favor for a growing, younger and wealthier white professional class that is changing city demographics. Then there are all the building contracts. The common lament is that they go to Fenty's friends and hardly anyone else, often without the approval of the city council. And there's the complaint that he's an arrogant, effete, out-of-touch, exercise fanatic. (A trolley? Really?)

Washington, D.C. is a city of contradictions. It has great wealth, but lots of poverty. It is the seat of our Federal government, but the people who live here aren't represented in that federal government. (But everyone still pays taxes.) The city government is limited in their power because the founding father's never thought people would live here on a permanent basis -- you know? Other than their servants. Who couldn't vote when the country was founded, because they were slaves. So it shouldn't be particularly surprising that while this is a transient city whose professional class often changes with the Presidential Administration, the population that has always lived here, who was born here and will die here is mostly black.

And those people don't seem to like Fenty at all.

Unlike former "Mayor For Life" Marion Barry, who is seen by most here as a (comically) tragic figure who despite sometimes acting like your crazy drunk uncle did a lot for the people of Washington, Fenty has no such fan club. Barry, after all, made his name as a civil rights activist. Fenty is among the generation who followed, reaping the benefits of the civil rights movement. People don't see him as a warrior for D.C.'s permanent black working class that has no voting rights. They see him as being about money, and only money. Money for himself and his friends. And they call him King Fenty. Or boy. Depending on how angry they are with him that day.

Fenty is so unpopular, the most viral and vicious rumor about him is that he beats his wife. And that rumor persists so strong that recently Fenty and his people started pushing back against it. Some folks are blaming Fenty's opponents for spreading the rumor. I guess that's true if Fenty's opponents include grandmothers, random people I meet on the street, my friends and pissed off cab drivers, he's got a lot of opponents.

It'll be interesting to see how the election plays out, with all of Fenty's hits and misses, and the perception among many African Americans in D.C. that Fenty doesn't care about their interests or concerns. Will he be done in by the same folks who voted him into office? Or will the recent demographic shifts of young whites moving to D.C. turn the city race into something more like my hometown of St. Louis, Mo., which has a large poor and black working class, but unlike in D.C., their voting might is often easily divided, diluted and ineffectual in favor for whomever the ruling class is backing.

At least Fenty can't say he's not aware the voter apathy/warth surrounding him. When you're getting booed by school kids at graduation speeches ... kids who ordinarly care more about college entrance exams and whatever Lil Wayne is rapping about from prison ... you have a serious problem.

VOICE YOUR FENTY HATE (or ... I dunno. Love. Somebody has to love this man. Tell me why you love him!) IN THE COMMENTS BELOW!

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Reader Comments (31)

I'm getting strong deja vu here (although our election is over). This sounds so much like Newark, NJ it isn't funny. The particular concerns differ, but the predominate feeling by a disproportionate number of (native) residents is eerily the same.

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterShuggie

Newarkers call ours "Hollywood" "Mr Hollywood" (due to his high profile self promotion and contacts)

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterShuggie

I didn't vote for him last election because I felt like the City needed a new direction and I didn't feel like the city council members provide that. I still don't. It's seems like everyone uses the city government positions to get as much as out it for themselves as possible. I'm hoping that since this is a transient city, we don't have a vote or total oversight over the City, someone will come along who will use his/her position to get as much out of Congress on the City's behalf as possible. And, use they power to fix the City's problems, from education to water services. After all, the Federal government resides here, too. As long as they are here, they still have to breath the same air, drive on the same streets, ingest the same water, and face the same threats, as the people who live here permanently. I guess we'll see what happens over the next few months.

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCap'n Crunch

Funny. I grew up 10 minutes away in the 'burbs and just moved to the city. Last week I was w/ two(only one a native Washingtonian) saw Fenty hustling for signatures for the petition to get on the ballot. There was a collective groan and we debated if we should go back and hide inside. LOL! I just know that the Fenty hate is real. And so is the Gray lukewarmness which is so sad because DC is really at a tipping point and we need some strong leadership. Also, as a friend (also a new resident) pointed out this is moreso about old vs. new DC and it will be interested to see how things play out - especially in the next 10 years.

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRum Punch

The real growth and development going on in DC is not due to anything Fenty has done. It is the residual effects of what Anthony Williams was able to accomplish. He was a visionary for the city and a very above board guy. He wanted to see the city become a destination for more than the monuments. Unfortunately the DC natives are restless and want to have a direct connection and promise from Fenty that they will receive the handouts they deserve. Herein lies the problem of the black community.....HANDOUTS!
Gentrification does not just happen over night. There are Town Hall meetings, city planning commissions and the like, however "we" don't show up. Nor do we seek the information necessary to prepare for the "new city". We don't ensure that our property grows in value at the same rate due to the lack of resources, in part, because of our lack of education and intrest in seeking the information. We can't keep blaming the elected officials for our failures to prepare, progress, and profit. We have to be our own advocate and action committee. We have to stand up and take ownership for our place in society and begin to organize and clean up our neighborhoods. We need to hold our churches accountable to also "educate" the masses about local issues, not just bibllical text. We also need to direct our students to the library instead of the mall. We have to do better to get better! Enough of the blame game. Fenty is doing what he projected during the campaign. He is taking care of "his people" as he promised....we just didn't know that we were not a part of his posse.....

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJustice

Danielle, Didn't you just move to D.C.? How can you be a hater already?

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterkhrish

Ironically, I met Leo Alexander today at the DC Ministers Conference. The Fenty hate is real and apparently the wife abuse is not one occassion but many and the other rumors, (while we're spreading them) are that Grey might be gay because there is apparently a lot of male friend comings and goings at all hours of the day and night and no female comings and goings in a neighborhood where comings and goings is not the general practice. And you KNOW ole Black folk ( or some young ones even) are not going to vote in a gay Mayor in DC. California ok, but DC? Nope, not happening.

Other rumors are that Fenty also may be a switch hitter and I was asked that by a cousin in Savannah, GA. Now I don't know HOW that got all the way to low country GA, but obviously this race is being watched by interested Colored folk, nationwide.

As a public school educator, I can't even begin to talk about Rhee who was NEVER even a certified teacher and they gave her the title of chancellor because Superintendant actually has State educational certification guidelines which she does not meet. ETS (your friendly people who bring you the SAT) actually have a test for Principals and Superintendants. I know I passed the Principal test. I doubt if Rhee has even taken it, since her claim to fame was to serve in a Teach America program (or something similar). Firing people who are willing to teach in drive by neighborhoods does not make you a good administrator. Firing people who could make more money teaching in MD but choose to stay in /DC because of their committment to kids is a bad choice. I could rant on, but its sposed to be bout Fenty.

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterbdsista

I love you, Snobby! This was unexpected sunshine in my email box. You have more big girl courage than anyone over at the WAPO (likely because you are not being spoonfed your info by Fenty's koolaid fembot shake and stirrers(See the 7/15/10 Washington City Paper Loose Lips for more on his press team). Here is the deal with "the Fentster." He is arrogant tyrant who happens to manage people poorly.
But this is Washington, after all. People could--would--forgive him for his fishy firetruck deals and frat boy hookups if he would *just once* admit failure when he fails (endless examples available) and mistakes when he messes up (daily). Instead he moves full speed ahead as though he is not accountable to the voting populous...arrogant and dumb.
Does he beat his wife? How would I know.
Is he a bad mayor? We all know the answer to that.

As for Rhee, I would even give Fenty a pass on that. Come on folks, the school system was one of the worst in the country. If we hadn't let it go down, Rhee would never have been empowered to "bring it back up." Just my thoughts. Her crime is the same is the same as his: Bad behavior/poor management sklls. She acts with the same reckless arrogant disregard as her tyrant boss. The real insult to his injury is his modeling and replication of poor leadership skills.

I hope he loses and has to work for his friend Ron Moten and the Peaceaholics.

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKoolaidKills

I live in Atlanta and don't give a dam who wins.

July 19, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterleegill

@ Khrish

I love D.C. and think it's a great city. This post wasn't about any sort of "hate" for D.C. It was about how I never run into Fenty supporters and most of my friends here are angrily opposed to the man. So you could argue that the post has some degree of "FENTY HATE" in it because that's what I've been surrounded by, but there's no D.C. hate in that post at all.

July 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle Belton

As a Washingtonian, I must say I am ready for another Mayor.
Fenty has not done nearly enough for the residents of wards 7 and 8.
I liked your piece Danielle and didn't see any hate, I found it humorous,
btw the most vicious rumor I have heard is that he is gay but maybe thats tied in to the wife beating rumor *orange shrug*

I'm not the biggest Fenty fan, the catalyst of which happened about 2 years ago, when he closed a large homeless shelter downtown and offered to shuttle all the homeless people to the 'hood. I live downtown and have noticed far more homeless people (men, in particular) hanging out in Franklin Park because that shelter (located across the street from the park) was closed so it could re-open as a boutique hotel. Said boutique hotel has not opened -- do you have any idea how depressing it is to look a huge, empty, slowly dilapidating building while there are men sleeping in the park across the street?

That said, I'm not sure how I feel about Vincent Gray. There's just something about him that's shady to me. Probably because he looks like he eats children and sweats while doing so.

July 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCaffeNera

ewww creepy CaffeNera, like that thing in Pan's Labyrinth *shivers*

Yes but Fenty hasn't helped the poor, homeless, and lower income folks at all. thats one of my main issues with him, like these people don't exist. I had heard that he was suppose to get homeles folks apartments or something to that effect to get them off the street, the closing oif that shelter and bussing thing is beyond reprehensible .
WARDS 7 and 8 ARE NOT THE CITIES dumping ground for undesireable elements, there are hard working honest folks in these wards that want nicer communities and improvements.
He has only helped himself and his friends, when rumors are persistent best believe there is some truth there.

He's been a careless a--hole from the beginning! Here's a guy who was too damn busy campaigning for City Council and his neglect robbed a family out of a trust that he was in charge of during his fledgling years as a lawyer! Then one of his lawyer friends, Nickles I believe, came to rescue him from disbarment just in time to be elected to city council and then as dictator of DC! People in DC have selective amnesia! I knew I wasn't voting for him, once he showed so much disrespect and neglect for his elders and clients!! He Stinks to high hell! If any of the merry-go-round of rumors explodes and rings true, on top of the mismanagement, we might be able to shove and shame his ass out of office before the election. If the wife abuse rumor is true, I swear I'm showing up at his next rally decked out in a "End Violence Against Women and DC" T-shirt and pass a truckload of them out to attendees! Be gone already Fenty! Just go away!

July 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSavvybroad

Well I don't live in D.C. and so I won't have a vote.. However, I will be waiting to see who the citizens elect as their new leader as well as how long it will take them to rip him apart. Good luck to you all I hope you get what you want or you could come out here and live with the redneck we are saddled with in Virginia.

For Newark, N.J. poster, You may not have what you want, but from what I have seen of your city....He certainly seems better than what you had.

July 20, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterkhrish

"The real growth and development going on in DC is not due to anything Fenty has done. It is the residual effects of what Anthony Williams was able to accomplish."

Im sorry, but that statement is incorrect. Barry was the first mayor to come in and clean up the city, and begin to court businesses to come into the downtown area. And this is coming from a Barry-hater. Got to give the man his props. he did do a few good things.

L

July 20, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterlola gets

We can all agree that a certain level of ego, bravado, and delusion are required to run for high ranking public office. 10% of popular politicians are folks who actually grind hard for their constituents. The other 90% that get reelected have mastered the art of either (a) pretending to care about the people whom they're meant to serve or (b) articulating the issues that voters care about in a way that makes folks feel like "OK, s/he gets it... s/he understands MY issues."

I live in New York City; visit DC pretty often, and for the life of me could not figure out why all of my friends and former classmates who live in the DC area HATE Mayor Fenty. From what you've written and what I've heard from friends, It sounds as if Fenty suffers the same delusions and bad characteristics as other politicians - nepotism, self importance and entitlement, living in a bubble full of delusional friends that serve as yes-men, etc.

But, unlike skilled politicians, Mayor Fenty lacks that intangible factor that makes you feel that he gets it. This is my own observation from speeches and TV appearances in which he appeared... bored. I mean, one of my friends was pissed that he held a press conference at her bus stop, forcing the bus to drive farther down the street to pick up passengers, which was of course an inconvenience, albeit a small one. But what was her reaction? "UGGHHHH! He just doesn't get it! He's so stupid!" Mind you, this is a 30 year old, highly astute and well spoken woman. And I'd liken her reaction to that of a 12 year old.

Which is the greater point - my friend and the voters of DC are creatures of feeling. If one doesn't feel like his or her problems or opinions matter, then they will seek someone (or in this case, vote someone else into office) that provides that comfort. There are entire curricula written on matters of "how to make people think you are giving them what they want without giving them anything at all." He aint get the memo?

Without even knowing the circumstances in DC, it sounds as though this is 85% of his problem - communicating effectively in a manner that connects him with his constituents and makes him seem like their problems are his problems.

Great piece, thanks for sharing.

July 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAntonio

I'm a DC native who isn't really (technically born in DC but sooooo raised in the suburbs of Prince George's County, MD; trust me: it matters!). I LOATHE FENTY! I passed one of his slapdash, temporary voting headquarters last night while driving up Georgia Avenue (to my Montgomery County, MD home). I've heard, among other things, that he regards Blacks who aren't the product of white and black parents as lowlifes and irrelevant. I've also heard the wife-beating rumors and because I dislike him so much? I'm willing to believe them! Now, Superintendant Rhee? I may HAVE to love her. I've NEVER heard anything from her that indicates she hates lil' Black children and whenever she's seen in public, she seems MOST comfortable with the kids (vs. the TRIFLING Black adults who've been a pox on DC government since time began, it seems). So, as many adult ruffled feathers and pink slips Rhee may leave in her wake? I'm kinda not mad at her! Whereas Fenty couldn't care less about anyone other than the gentrifiers. Again, while driving up Georgia Avenue last night, I was dismayed at the number of gentrifiers running around in the late hours, CLEAR that they wouldn't be touched because Fenty, the MPD (police), and effed-in-the-head Blacks and Browns regard them as superior. I was appalled to see a white woman walking alone and without any quickness in her step after 11 p.m. in little running shorts and a bra top and, a few blocks later, two Hispanic women walking in excessive clothing, huddled together, and stepping quickly in the manner of those used to unrelenting street harrassment and violence. It burns me up that, in a Fenty DC, these two reeked the odor of the frightened and the white woman exuded the stench of the superior. Now, in fairness? The REAL problem is that Black and Brown women have never been protected under ANY of these men's administrations: Fenty's, Barry's, or that of Williams. Williams, BTW, was kindly and a result of adoption. He didn't have a power-hungry bone in his body; he was very simple and hardly complex. He was a happy man, with or without power, it seems. But, after Barry's voracious ego, drama, and appetite for "King" status? Methinks Williams was too Beta for a city used to an Alpha. And Fenty is a mere child in the company of (even ill-mannered) men. However, that the "Boy King" has the wealthy as his court? He gets to get away with his spoiled uselessness when it comes to the underclass, working poor, and even merely middle-class Blacks.

Not that I have an opinion or anything. :o)

July 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterProfessher

another dc native here. all i can say is: pass the popcorn. auntie carol will show up at wrist-thirty.

July 21, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterdevessel

I am a DC native, lived here my whole life and just recently purchased a home in the city. Let's just get to the heart of the matter, shall we? Adrian Fenty is not an African American. His mother is white and his father is Panamanian and his wife is Jamaican. There are huge cultural differences here. Like many people of color who benefit from African American struggle and "pass" for African American to benefit from our resources, Fenty enjoyed the unquestioned support of African Americans during the last mayoral election. There was absolutely nothing about him that would have suggested that he would have given a damn about African Americans, and yet, black folks saw a black man and drank the Koolaid. I remember when I was a teenager and girlfriend and I stopped in his parent's sneaker store in Adams Morgan and were greeted by Fenty's brother with a look that suggested we were not at all wanted or needed--I'll never forget that as Iong as I live. His aligning himself with whites and other non-black folks should come as no surprise given that that is his life experience. I don't fault him for that, of course, but my point is that like many bi-racial people who grow up in upper middle class surroundings with parents who don't share the experience of most African Americans, he does not feel a tremendous degree of empathy for the black citizens of DC. He views them as a reliable voting black based on the fact that he "looks black" but certainly, any time he hires one of his boy's girlfriends to run the school system (Michelle Rhee) fires to hire white, throws money into a baseball team that we needed like a hole in the head, constructs stupid-assed trolley cars, and claims as a major victory "affordable housing"which is really tantamount to shoddy, B-class apartment dwellings in bad neighborhoods (away from the more coveted, young white gentrifiers) while the city is becoming more segregated by the day, what would he expect the black residents of DC to think of him? How much do you want to bet that by the time the city's non-black citizens increase to outnumber blacks the DC will suddenly get statehood? Pease. VOTE FENTY OUT IMMEDIATELY.

July 22, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNikkiT

I live across the 14th St. Bridge in Alexandria. It is amazing to see how much DC has changed. The U Street area is under such heavy gentrification its unbelievable. Where did all of the black people go??
The political nail in the coffin for him was the appointment of Michele Rhee. She was brought in to do a specific job, turn around the reputation of DC schools so that young white people will stay in the District when they have children. That message was clear from the start. And how does she do that, fire teachers. (I should mention that I'm a teacher, not in the District). Her plan, hire new, fresh out of college, white teachers from middle America (read middle class/suburban) that only want to come in and save the poor black children until they get married, have children, quit and become stay at home moms or transfer to neighboring school districts. Children cannot succeed in school with a high turnover rate of teachers nor in a school where people are there to "save" them not educate them.
Under Fenty's administration, a school district historically in peril, continues to do so under his appointment. If I lived in DC, he wouldn't get my vote either!

July 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCK_One

I don't like Adrian Fenty for several reasons. However, isn't the reason that people like Marion Barry championed civils right is so that the next generation could do what Adrian Fenty is doing and that is to simply be a politican?

July 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLila

Oh ok...Well I am DEFINITELY voting for FENTY!!! and all these Marion Barry Washingtonians need to ACTUALLY wake up and see that they DO NOT represent the city anymore. They moved to WARD 9!!! (PG COUNTY). Were you can still vote for stuttering jack johnson, who like marion barry seem to be continuously hitting the pipe. Ward 8, what exactly has Marion Barry done for your ward TODAY? The bottom line is, the schools needed change, the city is growing with more educated people (OF ALL RACIAL BACKGROUNDS), and when there was meetings in neighborhood advisory boards and ANC, Black people were no were to be found.......NOW their taking the anger out on Fenty, well its too bad, because even if you vote Vincent Gray into office, The neighborhoods, schools, and population WILL still continuously change. The proverbial train has left the station, either your on it or get left behind.....

July 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterFenty Supporter

I REFUSE TO SUPPORT FENTY! Leo Alexander all the way!!!!! I recently purchased a condo in Ward 7 that I absolutely love. My neighbors within my development are young, ethnically/racially diverse professionals. Once I leave my condominiums, it as if I am in a totally different world. There are dilapidated buildings all around. There are residents living in buildings with boarded up windows and no access to air, so they are sitting outside on the steps. Fenty has continued to neglect his constituents in what he considers "low income" wards.

To the Fenty supporter who stated that black people fail to attend neighborhood meetings, I have never once seen any communication regarding the meetings. I have looked on websites and called local offices. Its easier to find a liquor store than the time and date of a meeting.

Fenty is arrogant, obnoxious, classist and egregious. He is an ineffective leader, which is evident by his appointment of Chancellor Rhee and the mismanagement of the budget. He will never get my vote.

July 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWhitney

I moved into the area in 2003, the district 2007. I'm a non-local AfAm person that can see the many sides to this debate.

I don't love him, don't hate him. I'm at most ambivalent. That summer youth program debacle (throw a bone at young black kids so they aren't idle, but if they do work...stiff them on their paycheck) ticked me off.

Don't get sucked into the "way it was" with Barry. The city was a pure shithole then. What Barry did (go see the doc) back in the day does not have any bearing on what he does for the city as a whole NOW. I thank him for the CR aspects of his service, and undertand how DC was/is a white politician's playground, but it is long time for him to sit down and for the residents of Ward 8 to hold their leadership accountable...or as always someone else will.

@Justice (noting the churches of which you speak are full of Marylanders). You are the only person here who put forth activities that we need to do, instead of descending to the emotionally satisfying bashfest. I think we could have assumed we weren't relevant, though (his heritage). At some point, we have to learn and participate. Start by putting idle males to work cleaning up old folks' homes. Purging troublemakers. Nobody is going to help us. Nobody cares. The sooner we accept that, the sooner we can start taking care of what is ours.

Hst (which I may end up buying) needs a form of "rapid" transit to bring the property taxpaying citizens (whose $$ is desperately needed) to work downtown or to the Metro.

Koolaid~that peaceaholics mess did it for me. At best, I will abstain.

Orangestar~ I live in Ward 1. It IS a dumping ground with halfway houses etc...It's not all cute. Sure, there are commercial developments that benefit all, but Fenty - really, Graham won't put the burden on Ward 3 to assist with DCs poverty.

professher~ i understand your concern for brown/black women. As a single black woman myself, I let the presence of others determine whether I can live in an area. Frankly, brown men leave me alone (I speak the language). When it comes down to it..the problem for black women in DC is not the Mayor...Many areas I wouldn't sleep in sans gun. The issue is, what kind of police presence (MPD...sigh) do we want. If it's there, how will we react? Will we cooperate? I also want to add: don't automatically link black with brown. Only blacks do that. Brown folks could give 2 f-s about us. They fear us as much as they fear MS-13. They also have markets, restaurants and the ear of Jim Graham.

I live around the cold-hearted pioneer mentality that is the progeny of white suburban yuppie types. No, it's not "fair" that the powers that be react to them. Water is wet. The world isn't fair.

Folks, Instead of slinging around rumours about who's gay (there is a vibrant gay black dc that has to deal with the dupont set AND you homophobic assholes), how about running black thugs out on a rail (let MD deal with it). How about making sure your kids are at home before lights come on? If you live in the suburbs, go for a smaller house, smaller yard and give up your car (oh wait...won't do that will ya). How about making sure that a DC teacher has something to work with (students - study, that is their job)?

I spend some time reading the blogs of the ilk you describe (DCist, prince of petworth...). It's painful, often racist. But there is some brutal, unvarnished honesty and community saving strategies and techniques you can employ. Where are our yogurt shops? Eateries (all the Koreans sell wings, ribs..your food)? Where are our coffee shops?

Frankly, I'm not optimistic.

Blacksnob~~keep looking at DC critically, look at everybody though. Not just that bald man with the green signs. Look at your neighbors, their kids, their yards...

July 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLaJane Galt

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