Tuesday, January 08, 2008

New Community Group to Form

Haven't posted anything in quite a while. I guess I felt like taking a mental holiday, and it was indeed restful and therapeutic.

But life goes on, and stuff still happens, and problems still need to be addressed. Which is why I'm hoping there will be a good turnout for an initial organizational meeting to form a new community group to deal with the issues facing our neighborhood. The meeting to form the still-unnamed association will take place on Thursday, January 10 at 6:30 p.m. at 817 Q Street NW (the home of Mr. Ray, who has generously offered his house as a venue--getting a meeting room at KRC turned out to be too complicated). Everyone is welcome.

Update: It now appears that due to the number of folks who have expressed interest, the meeting may be held outdoors at the adjacent triangular park at 9th, Q, and RI Ave. If the weather is bad, location may have to move, so stay tuned.


So why do we need a new organization? Because we don't have one now. The Mt. Vernon Square neighborhood has a very good one, but the rest of Shaw has basically nothing. The ECCA, which allegedly covers the area, has degenerated into a personal pulpit for ex-ANC commissioner Leroy Thorpe since he hijacked it with a bogus election in December 2006. He has tried to ban neighbors who live on the same block as the church where the ECCA meetings are held, threatening to have them arrested. For an account of the latest fiasco, see here. As much as I admire and applaud Charles' and Martin's efforts to stand up for the principle of inclusion, I simply don't believe that the ECCA will ever be anything more that what it is. We need to start from scratch.

We need an effective association because our politicians and bureaucracies pay more attention to organizations than to individual citizens. Unfortunately, DC is still a patronage-driven government. You can't expect that a DC agency will do what it's supposed to do just because that's its job--political pressure needs to be brought to bear to get anything done. And we need an organization that will actually express the collective will of the neighborhood and deliver that kind of persistent pressure.

This area has been the neglected step-child for much too long, and we need an association that is not burdened with bile and baggage and is not a vehicle for personal political ambitions. It should be focused on specific issues that are of concerned to all neighbors--new and old alike--such as crime, vacant properties, city services, and education.

So show up Thursday evening and let's start something happening!


At 1/08/2008 9:11 PM, Anonymous martin said...

Mayor Adrian Fenty should really stop sending his staff to meetings run by people who try to dictate that members of the community are not allowed to ask questions of the Mayor's staff about community issues. Period. Hello, Adrian. So nice of you to visit Blagden Alley twice in six months and keep out of the east side of 2C. And please take down that over sized billboard on the back of that building at 6th & K. No one is that great. Not even you. It's a bit third world really. Almost creepy.

If the Mayor's and Jack Evans reps go to MT's meetings they should at least not just sit there like bumps on a log while MT misinforms his small flock about community issues. It's a terrible disservice to those poor people who don't (want to) know any better.

At 1/09/2008 12:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Daddy 5-0, I do not know you but you have class. You are intelligent enough to not attend meetings where there is discord. Unlike two Shaw neighbors that just show up to agitate the situation. So maybe now with a different neighborhood forum in the makings, people will be happy and not attend the ECCA meetings.

At 1/09/2008 4:46 PM, Anonymous Charles Walker said...

Anonymous, were you at the ECCA meeting? My neighbor Martin and I did not "show up to agitate the situation". We went there because the president of the ECCA presumes to say who can and cannot attend meetings, and we think that is outrageous. It is important to show, firmly yet with civility, that he cannot get away with it, and that's exactly what we did.

Also, people should not delude themselves into thinking that founding the CCNA, laudable goal though it may be, will make city officials and developers stop paying tribute to the ECCA and its apparent president-for-life. The illegitimate leadership of the ECCA has to be confronted and diminished in the eyes of everyone important in the city, or replaced with legitimate leadership.

At 1/09/2008 7:46 PM, Anonymous Martin said...

Dr King was an agitator so were Rosa Parks and other great Americans who decided to act and not just sit home and watch television and pray for Jesus to come down out of heaven and live their lives for them and solve all their problems while they sat at home and watched tv and ate/drank themselves happy.

Chuck and I helped define the ECCA for what it really is, and we did it in their faces, so they can no longer act like they are a real asset to the community. Another few nails in the ECCA coffin; It'll stop kicking soon.

At 1/10/2008 5:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dr. King and Ms Parks were revolutionaries, and not people whose sole purpose is to just stir up stank. Martin, you are very mis-educated. You live in America, but you are not an American. One day you'll see. You said that you have LT on the ropes, beware of the rope- a - dope !! I am not going to use this person's website to squabble with the two of you. I've seen the both of you in meetings acting like school kids, so now you will have a different venue to carry out your agenda. Have a nice day.

At 1/11/2008 9:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are African-Americans welcome to join this new association?

At 1/12/2008 6:10 AM, Blogger DaddyFiveOh said...

To Anonymous: "Are African-Americans welcome to join this new association?"

I'm surprised at the question, but the answer is: Yes, of course. Everyone means everyone.

At 3/24/2008 8:14 AM, Blogger SFD said...

Hi there! I'm writing a story about Shaw for the Washington Post, including the idea that Shaw's a particularlly bloggy neighborhood. Could I interview you for the story? If so, please email me at sadied@gmail.com
- Sadie

At 3/27/2008 2:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey there. I was wondering when the next meeting for this new aasoc. Please let me know. I will make time to join in.

At 4/27/2008 6:34 PM, Blogger sarahcooper said...


I'd like to get more involved in the community and am wondering if this group or any other groups have monthly meetings? I do recall receiving a flyer this summer/fall about upcoming neighborhood meetings, but don't recall the contact info/website.

If anyone can help, that would be great.

Many thanks,



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