Wednesday, May 27, 2009

An article at Cincy, the Magazine for Business Professionals called "A Streetcar named Perspire" has some quotes from the nattering naybobs opposed to this project that bother me. I am used to ignorant, uninformed people making pointless statements but in this case I was troubled by who was saying what.
The Rev. Dock Foster, pastor of Unity Baptist Church in East Walnut Hills, is president of the Baptist Ministers Conference of Cincinnati, which voted to oppose the streetcar initiative. He looks around his and other predominantly black neighborhoods of Evanston, Avondale and Bond Hill and sees unemployment in the teens, poverty and despair. Pumping money into a streetcar that doesn’t run through any of those neighborhoods is an affront to him when he sees the need for direct investment in those neighborhoods to create jobs and alleviate suffering.
“A streetcar at this time is the wrong time,” Foster says. “We have so much poverty.”
Asked if the city can’t simultaneously build streetcar and work on neighborhood problems, Foster says, “Let’s see them working on the problems. We’re like the people in Missouri. Show me.”

and
Bishop Stephen Scott, a Unity Baptist Church member, says the streetcar plan ignores the neighborhoods. “They want the front door to look good and then you walk inside the house and it’s a mess,” he says.

Perhaps he had some solutions and they just weren't quoted. The neighborhoods they cite, of course, are not the same as the ones where the streetcar routes are planned for and likely would not be a great investment in their neighborhoods.
Big problems holding back growth in those neighborhoods is crime and the government can only react to crime.
Alleged Men of God, however, are supposed to lead people to not engage in crime, to be frugal and to focus and dedicate themselves to a Godly life, to prosper, be a good family member, a community member and to work towards building the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth and all that other nice Calvinistic stuff these guys are supposed to be dedicated to.
The attitude of "I want a piece, too !!" doesn't seem too terribly Christlike, either.
What kind of neighbors are these guys ?
In the WCPO documentary, Visions of Vine, The Baptist Minister's Conference was one of the land owners called out for maintaining blighted, unkempt property in OTR - the neighborhood they, apparently, don't want to see improved.
When kids in a neighborhood see this kind of thing it makes an impression on them. It shows them the owners don't care about them, their neighborhood or environment.
Maybe it's this lack of character and integrity that turns community members away and towards more tribal lifestyles.

4 comments:

Mark Miller said...

African Americans are 45% of city residents, and almost as a high a percentage of city voters. And every one of them is also a city taxpayer. They don't see that they are receiving a good return on their payments.

You need to understand the underlying issues here, or your candidacy is doomed. While we're on that topic, where can I sign your nominating petition?

Quim said...

Who's talking about black people ?
I'm talking about Baptist/Christian leadership.
I have been informed that baptists aren't Calvinists, tho. So maybe I am holding these guys feet to the wrong fire. Maybe high crime and dropout rates are what they want. Maybe being an absentee slumlord is a high accomplishment and sign of leadership in the Baptist community.

Mark Miller said...

That's an awfully scathing indictment of somebody's faith. Not like your usual goodnatured sarcastic wit. You're becoming a bit of a misanthrope. Something eating you?

Quim said...

Interesting.
I was just commenting over at the Temple that when you post light hearted humorous stuff nobody likes taking you seriously.
look, the government can teach you how to fish, they can give you a pole - it's the ministers job (after yer parents) to teach you to get out there and cast.