Asking the beautiful, shiny revelers occupying the part
of Vine Street comprising Gateway Quarter to recall and meditate on the
April 2001 riots, curfews and economic boycotts that erupted after
then-police officer Stephen Roach shot and killed Timothy Thomas on
Republic Street is impossible.
This is an all-out race and class war. If you’re
voting for the re-election of President Barack Obama then you’re either
black; an unthreatened/progressive white; or a minority who’s been
offended, discounted or demonized by Gov. Mitt Romney, Republicans
and/or the Tea Party.
News of the Oct. 10 death of Skandal (government name:
Marcus Mitchell, aka Skan, Skandizzle and Skandal Da Ruckus Man) after a
protracted battle with leukemia pinged through the ether like a metal
ball in a pinball game.
Miami University is a sick, sick campus in desperate need
of the largest group therapy session ever recorded, top-rung leadership
more palpably concerned with student safety and a less corporate
approach to media relations.
I was a ripe, sitting target for a bully when I entered
the fourth grade at Heritage Hill Elementary School in Springdale: I was
a shy 9-year-old; my single mother was settling her three kids after
abruptly leaving our father and bouncing about in a station wagon.
Like an Old Testament miracle, Chick-fil-A founders last
week reversed themselves and decided to stop contributing chicken
sandwich money to organizations spearheading the right-wing conservative
movement to dismantle same-sex marriage nationwide.
This election-era talk about lifting, taxing or not taxing America’s middle class doesn’t land or resonate with me. When I hear numbers like the possibility of $250,000 tax breaks for the
wealthy, it’s drowned out by the white noise poverty thrums through my
head or the rumbling hunger makes in my gut. It’s official: I am distracted by my own poverty.
There is a lot wrong in the brutal beating of Pat
Mahaney, a 45-year-old white man, by six black teenagers in North
College Hill. Sadly and somehow brilliantly, this is a teachable moment
about to pass us all by if we don’t start grappling with and then
telling some truths.
Like a lot of Cincinnati neighborhoods, mine — Walnut
Hills — is segregated and there are fine, even
invisible-to-the-unknowing-eye dividing lines separating beauty from
filth, danger from safety, white from black and the strugglers from the