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LOS ANGELES Sunday, July 5th 2015 9:55

 OUR 4TH OF JULY DIFFERENCES

The Declaration of Independence Meant Something Different to America’s Not So Independent Slaves

Amy Goodman
WHO WE ARE-“What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July?” asked Frederick Douglass (photo above) of the crowd gathered at Corinthian Hall in Rochester, NY, on July 5, 1852. “I answer,” he continued, “a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which lie is the constant victim. To him,…

Trumping Trump: Shun the Donald, Boycott His Palos Verdes Golf Course

Bob Gelfand
GELFAND’S WORLD-I believe that it's really Donald Trump's hair. I seem to be unique in this belief. It's nice to be unique in some way, but what bothers me is that I have also been nearly unique, until now, in arguing that Trump should be shunned and boycotted. But times change. It's been a traumatic week both for Donald Trump and for the…

LA’s Sidewalks: Penny Wise and Pound Foolish

Jack Humphreville
LA WATCHDOG-The City of Los Angeles is expected to spend $1.4 billion over the next 30 years to repair our sidewalks pursuant to a Settlement Agreement involving the Willits class action lawsuit that alleged that the City was not in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. While the yet to be disclosed Settlement Agreement appears to…

Is It Really a Golden State or Is It Just One of Those Hollywood Illusions?

Dennis Zine
JUST THE FACTS-Is Los Angeles really part of a Golden State or is it a place to remember as you move to greener pastures? I pose this question following my recent visit to Chicago and other cities east of the Rockies. My travels to the east coast were part of my reserve LAPD duty. I was part of the group of LAPD Reserve Officers escorting the…

Want to Save The Bullet Train, Governor … Get Better Bullet Points!

Ken Alpern
GETTING THERE FROM HERE-George W. Bush had Iraq. Barack Obama has ObamaCare. And Jerry Brown has HIS bullet train. Not OUR bullet train, mind you, but HIS bullet train. And like Iraq, and like ObamaCare, the bullet train that was meant to help all of us, and which was promoted with great fanfare and wonderful intentions, has to survive the test of…

LA: Hit-and-Run Capital of the World May Be Getting an Alert System

Damien Newton
LA’S STREETS - After last week’s warning that CA Assemblymember Mike Gatto’s legislation to create a “Yellow Alert” system was imperiled by Senate Transportation and Housing Committee staff and the California Highway Patrol’s (CHP) objections, there was a feeling of a looming showdown before today’s committee hearing. Assembly Bill 8 would create…

LA’s Citywide Sign Ordinance: By, For and Of Special Interests

Barbara Broide
IRATE PRIVATE CITIZEN’S OPEN LETTER-I write this letter not as a representative of my local homeowners association or neighborhood council, both of which have come out in support of the sign ordinance that limits new signage to sign districts in specified commercially zoned areas and who seek enforcement of and the issuance of citations to signs…

Now Is the Time For True Courage

Abby Zimet
FURTHER-Britanny 'Bree' Newsome - the filmmaker, organizer, activist and aspiring Super-Woman who memorably, determinedly climbed the flagpole at South Carolina's capitol to remove the Confederate flag - has spoken out for the first time about her feat, which she views "both as an act of civil disobedience and as a demonstration of the power…

When Did the American Civil War Really End and … Did Shenandoah Really Save the Whales?

Paul Hatfield
PERSPECTIVE - When did the American Civil War end? Could it really have been late June or early November of 1865? April 9, 1865 is the date widely accepted, and for good reason: it marked the surrender of General Lee’s army at Appomattox, Virginia. It was a foregone conclusion that other field commands would quickly follow suit. In fact, they did,…

 

  • Costco: Free Range Liars!

    Christian Cristiano
    WELLNESS POLITICS-Eight years ago grocery retailer Costco (COST) pledged to transition out of using eggs from chickens in small cages to cage free…
  • 10 Things Over-Thinkers Are Tired Of Over-Thinking

    Lindsay Holmes
    WELLNESS-While writing this intro, I deleted the first paragraph approximately six times. My thoughts ranged from "Just get to the point already" to…
  • Can Procrastination Give You a Heart Attack?

    Christian Cristiano
    WELLNESS-A study posted in the journal of behavioral medicine linked procrastination with hypertension and cardiovascular disease. Specifically…



Thu Jul 16, 2015 @12:00AM
LA Equality Awards RSVP
Thu Jul 30, 2015 @ 6:00PM - 08:00PM
A Taste of Chatsworth


Fail! Fail! Americans don’t know why we celebrate the 4th of July

Awwww! Tornado separates dog and owner … dog waits!

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

Is this “The Year of the Neighborhood" for LA?

RETHINKINGLA - Writer Dorothy Parker once described Los Angeles as 72 suburbs in search of a city. Since then the number has grown to almost 100, reflecting LA’s robust diversity and the fact that Angelenos tend to identify more with their neighborhood than with their city.

Some of the most heated battles in recent history have taken place over neighborhood boundaries as communities seek to claim unique identities that reflect their cultural, economic, and political personality and character.
The boundary between Hollywood and East Hollywood continues to stir debate just as the formation of Lake Balboa and Valley Glen did when portions of Van Nuys were renamed, giving real estate agents a shot at a better commission.

In some cities, this rich diversity of neighborhoods is celebrated in a municipal demonstration of the fact that the whole is greater than the parts. In other cities, such as Los Angeles, City Hall seems to struggle with this vibrant cast of community voices, urging community members to homogenize their message.

Sydney, Australia is a city of 4.6 million people, divided into 649 neighborhoods and 40 local government areas. Sydney identifies itself as a “City of Villages,” not just in words but in behavior. The Lord Mayor uses public transportation to take the business of City Hall to local communities, demonstrating that a large Alpha+ World City can be an international power at the same time that it establishes a connection with local politics.

Nagoya, Japan is one of LA’s Sister Cities, a relationship that is working better for Nagoya than it is for Los Angeles. The Mayor of Nagoya celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Sister City relationship by conducting a special seminar that featured LA’s Department of Neighborhood Empowerment and demonstrated his commitment to the concept of participatory democracy at the local level.

EmpowerLA’s General Manager BongHwan “BH” Kim and Russell Brown, then President of Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council, were guests of Mayor Kawamura who embraced the concept of local governance so much, he has since moved to devolve the City Council in favor of empowering local neighborhoods. He was recently reelected by a landslide, demonstrating that this is “The Year of the Neighborhood” in Nagoya!

A delegation from Venezuela recently toured the United States as guests of the Department of State, stopping by EmpowerLA’s office for a lesson on “Grassroots Democracy and Citizen Participation in the Political Process.”  America’s International Visitor Leadership Program recognizes the power to be found in the neighborhoods of Los Angeles and the value of sharing that power with other countries.

Meanwhile, City Hall stands tall as if a neighborhood unto itself, requiring communities to trek downtown to participate while other cities take their municipal show on the road.

With citywide elections on the horizon, Los Angeles is at a crossroads.

Will the candidates for Mayor, City Controller and City Attorney celebrate local politics and declare this “The Year of the Neighborhood!” or will they simply continue in the centralized silo approach with Neighborhood Councils lined up as spectators?

Will the candidates for the eight City Council seats commit to empowering the many neighborhoods that make up their districts or will they tender the usual promises of city services in an effort to quell any hint of discontent?

Most importantly, will the members of LA’s Neighborhood Councils declare this “The Year of the Neighborhood!” by supporting the candidates who have risen from the EmpowerLA community and answered the call?

(Stephen Box is a grassroots advocate and writes for CityWatch. He can be reached at: Stephen@thirdeyecreative.net. You can also find him on Twitter and on Facebook.)
–cw

Tags: Stephen Box, Rethinking LA, neighborhoods, Year of the Neighborhood, Sister Cities, Neighborhood Councils, Los Angeles, City Hall









CityWatch
Vol 10 Issue 37
Pub: May 8, 2012

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