Funding for the Black Community: No Excuses
Watching Portland City Council today 4-12-23 in determining how monies originally dedicated to empowering the black community with investments were characterized and maligned in the discussion. One thing for sure is that when allocating resources to help black people it seems like there is always a controversy. I don’t imagine that kind of controversy allocating funding for a dog park would conjure up that kind of controversy. What is starkly clear, is that the City has been criminally dysfunctional when it comes to moving any positive agenda for black people.
Commissioner Rubio was emphatic about the original intent and purpose of the disputed resources. She outlined when, who, and why the money was allocated. She was spectacular in her defense of retaining the resources for Reimagine Oregon and Imagine Black. Even the Mayor attempted to be creative in finding a way to honor the city’s commitment to doing something right for the black community. His longevity and experience on City Council was a sign of his political maturity. The commissioners who voted to redirect the money didn’t seem to understand the real and symbolic harm and impact of their decision to redistribute promised black dollar commitments. Nevertheless, the black community has more work to do to emphasize the catastrophic damage inflicted on the black community and the need to find every avenue to remedy past harm and hurt.
Of course, the black community bears some responsibility to move initiatives aimed at supporting and restoring black livability and economic growth. We can’t afford to think the system will automatically respond and take of us. We need to step up to the plate and get it done, no excuses.
A few days ago I returned to Atlanta GA for the funeral of a giant in the Black construction field. Art J. Queen’s influence was not limited to the construction industry, he was an exceptionally good man in all aspects of his life. He never met a person he did not want to help. He would give you the shirt off his back. I could only attribute his goodness to his Christian values which he wore on his sleeves with pride. I am so thankful that I had a chance to know this man and regret I did try to spend more time in his presence.
I had not been in Atlanta in a while but it did not take me long to feel at home. And I was elated and exceedingly happy to be surrounded by so many Black people. It was almost like I could breathe again and a sense of my African/Blackness rushed in to revive me. There is nothing like being around Black people in mass and immersed in their authentic selves. You get to see the good, the bad, and the ugly and most beautiful in all our variations. For me, it was breathtaking and make me know how isolated I am from my roots. For a minute I saw the awesomeness of their material accumulations and spectacular political/social achievements but what was most impressive for me was that they seem like they were in control of their environment and had a spirit of wholeness. I might have just been intoxicated by the intensity of being around so many Black people. But whatever the case might be, I know I wanted more and was sorry to leave this Black Oasis. I know I had my rose-colored glasses on because I could see over in the distance that everything was not straight in the ATL. One wrong turn in the wrong direction could have changed my perspective one hundred degrees. I just know that when I left ATL it was as if I had not finished a delicious meal. God knows that being Black is a precious earthy attribute and I went to the ground in Atlanta.
This guy promotes everything good about Portland
We go way back. I hope we can continue into the future with good times. This guy promotes everything good about Portland
Parting of the Sea
My grandson and I attended the TRI-Met FX Divison Street Transit project opening on September 17th. For me, it felt like a messianic event. It was modern-day Moses parting the Red Sea. Jeff Moreland stood up and accepted the award for completing a very very successful $93 million Division Street Transit construction project. It seems like most folks in Portland and around the state don’t recognize how significant this event was and cannot appreciate the magnitude of how this project has changed the game for black and minority contractors. After decades of exclusion, finally, a black contractor gets a serious piece of the transportation construction pie. As I held my grandson I finally felt like his future was much brighter as a consequence of Raimore’s success. The reason why I am so optimistic is that I know Raimore is focused on giving back to the community and not worshiping the almighty dollar. The point can’t be over-emphasized, for the first time, a very successful black contractor was willing to give back. It was a powerful event and when we look back, it will be seen as a benchmark for real Black economic progress in Oregon.
The Graffiti problem is a sickness
COMB helping youth remove tags
I was so glad to see KGW-8 do a story on graffiti. It’s a big deal because it tells us how sick our city is. It’s like an infectious disease all around us. The City doesn’t get it. Unless they can solve this problem, we are doubtful they can solve any problem.
The Coalition of Black Men has been working on this problem for many years without very much support. We hope the police will get even more serious and bust the taggers who have been operating without fear of punishment. We got to get at them.
Check out Pat Dooris’s piece:
We love our Veterans “really”.
We love our Veterans “really”.
This Memorial Day as a twenty-year Air Force service veteran I was sitting down missing my Vietnam-era Army veteran brother, Jerry Posey. He died in December 2020 after a long series of injuries attributed to being shot in the Back in Vietnam. He barely survived the war but eventually was overcome by its consequences.
I just want everybody to know that even though your country talks a good talk about how they support Veterans, there is a downside few want to talk about.
After all the ceremonies and hoopla thanking veterans for their service, today sit down and write your public officials, President, Congressional people, etc, about the following issues on behalf of all veterans:
- Unwilling to inform and accommodate key family members at critical points in the illness
- Lack of communication and individualized treatment plans to share with all involved in treatment efforts
- Uncoordinated treatment access and integrated processes and procedures
- Third-rate treatment facilities at many stages. Some animal shelters might be rated better.
- Enabling additive and harmful pharmaceutical treatment regimens and drug therapy
- Bureaucratic delays and obstruction to timely treatment resources and information
- No sense of service oversite or evaluation of the performance of staff and program outcomes in all program areas.
- No holistic approach to psychological /physiological patterns of behavior of patient as seen by family or recommended and presented by various providers.
- Failure of outcomes not adequately addressed.
- Lack of support for external family members in recovery and healing processes.
- Lack of professional social workers and behavioral professionals necessary to address ongoing and advancing illness.
- No end-of-life counseling or planning for anticipated death consequences.
- No method to provide levels of transparency to families
- A general alienation of family and support groups. Sometimes using intimidation tactics to avoid interventions.
- Financial care resources/benefits are not adequate to provide end-of-life care commiserate with commercial market prices and services. The veteran must be declared indigent to be qualified for inpatient services.
- Oh I forgot, black veterans face persistent ongoing racism into the grave!!!!!!!!
Yeah, we love our veterans.
NOT THIS TIME JOANN
I knew at some point, I had to address my opposition to JoAnn Hardesty’s reelection for Portland City Commissioner. Since we have only a few days before the May election I had to let our community know my thoughts. Most do not know I served as a fundraising Co-Chair for her last campaign. Let me say at the outset I do not know her opponents well, but my God, they couldn’t be any worse than JoAnn. You would have to be blind not to recognize that all of the City Commissioners are on the hot seat given Portland’s deplorable condition right now.
Besides the obvious, there are several reasons why she shouldn’t be re-elected and they are as follows:
- She is a stone-cold bully and drama queen and most people know it. Most of us who have personally been in meetings and public conversations with her have to acknowledge these faltering traits. It’s her way or the highway and not to dare promote an opposing point of view. This was in full display in October of 2019 when she bullied her way into the nominating committee chair to elect and install E.D. Mondaine as the President of the Portland Branch of the NAACP following her election to City Council. She was warned that E.D. was a freak and she ignored the facts and proceeded to promote and leverage him throughout government and with other influential people and organizations.
- She is ruthless and vindictive. What I originally thought was courage, turns out to be the insistence on being right and in control at all costs. If you oppose her you can be guaranteed to be blackballed and ostracized to the margins. If it doesn’t fit into her worldview, it doesn’t exist. If that wasn’t bad enough, she is genuinely toxic, polarizing, and disruptive.
- She is willing to shave moral principles to get what she wants regardless of who is harmed in the process. She had to know that suing the City and the police union regarding the union’s false report would only inflame the already impaired and degraded relationship with the Portland police. We are all less safe, particularly black males as a result of JoAnn’s unbalance assault on law and order. Stevie Wonder can see how this City is consumed with lawless behavior across-the-board. Her willingness to skirt moral imperatives also showed up in her administration of NAACP business when she was President of that organization. These are items her endorsers would not have a clue about.
- She has an enormous big head. You have to notice that she is willing to take credit for anything successful she is vaguely associated with. She is always clambering to be in the media and promote her agenda, excluding or minimizing the work of the other commissioners. One would think the City of Portland was her private property and she had some unilateral power to control decisions. In other words, she is a power control freak. She does things like exaggerating her military service. You would think that she commanded a battleship in the Navy when it is clear she was only a low-level secretary type, barely separating with an honorable discharge if that.
- She has some personal life skill control issues well documented in the media. If you can’t manage personal business issues, how can you be expected to manage the City’s business? We can’t afford another four years of her insane drama. Character Matters. While she tries to associate herself with Avel Gordly, in truth she is the polar opposite.
- We have to take another critical look at her previous background and positions of influence; the NAACP, ACTION, former State Legislator, and private business experience. There are dysfunctional patterns on display and the broader media needs to tell the full story, especially WW.
I won’t criticize her for being poorly educated because of the racist history of the miseducation of black people in America. And we know the supposedly highly educated are making fools of themselves too. Nevertheless, I find myself struggling to oppose a black woman in a most prominent position, but the truth is the truth and she must go for the sake of the entire community.
It’s the little things.
I’m happy to see that Legacy Health systems have stepped up to repair the damage on the corner of NE Willams and Stanton. A few months back, some likely intoxicated fool drove a vehicle into the fence and signage on this corner and destroyed everything. And within the last month, a black man (not the first) was killed 50 feet from the corner. Across the street, there is an open drug market right next to Immaculate Heart catholic church. They are exchanging everything from Pampers to stolen chain saws for drugs. I’ve lived down the street for nearly 40 years and know it is a menacing corner where outright lawlessness abides. I attribute this situation to our local politicians who have devalued police scrutiny on corners like this and thrown our entire criminal justice system into chaos. Moreover, as was the black man recently killed, for months now, it has been a source of various criminal activity adjacent to and inside historic Dawson Park. I see no end in sight.
However, it’s very heartening to see the Emannuel hospital (Legacy Health) take responsibility for restoring some sense of order and decency to this corner. It is the little things that are going to make a difference in our community. We all know that Legacy historically has done some bad stuff to the black community but we need to give a shout-out to Legacy Health Systems for today attempting to repair the breach with a little thing.
Daye, Rustie A :LSO Facility Services <RDAYE@LHS.ORG>