Every day, when my daughter was growing up, I’d point at a photograph in the newspaper and say “What’s wrong with this picture?”. She’s gone now, 23 years old and in school in Japan. Yet still, when I turned to page A-10 of today’s Pittsburgh Post Gazette, I said those words out loud. ”What’s wrong with this picture?”
I was disappointed. And then I wasn’t.
Every month Kim, Sara & I host a cityLIVE! event. We are interested, as we believe our audience is, in understanding issues that impact our city and region. We are interested in holding a forum that allows everyone to attend. And we are most interested in nurturing a thoughtful exchange of ideas.
Everyone deserves to earn enough money to pay for their daily essentials. On face value alone the proposed prevailing wage bill in Pittsburgh makes sense. It speaks to the basic decency of employers and their willingness to take some responsibility for their employees lives.
This lovely little city, Pittsburgh, is under siege. Every day the media describes yet another crisis. Eight more schools to close. Library branches to be shuttered. A court order to fix the water and sewer system. Underfunded pension funds. Property and business taxes that are burdensome. Disappearing bus stops. Disappearing mail boxes. And the latest, a mayor who wants to tax our local college students to balance the city’s books.
All is quiet this morning. Police are purposefully assembling for the G20 protest march that is expected to come through Downtown Pittsburgh at 2 pm this afternoon. Some small groups of protesters are scattered here and there. People are gathering and lounging on the jersey barriers. It’s a strange scene – armed forces and tourists, side by side.
Today, something fantastic happened. Something I have always dreamed of. We closed the streets of Downtown Pittsburgh to cars, and bicycles took over. Now, I know that was not the intent of the G20 security measures. But it was certainly an interesting, and positive, side effect.
The police are preparing themselves. The G20 resistance group will be marching into town this afternoon. They are gathering at Arsenal Park in Lawrenceville. They have no permit and so are an unknown quantity.
We’ve heard they mean business. Let’s hope the march is peaceful.
From my window. Yesterday and today.
Finally. Someone says it as it is. Rich Lord’s assessment of the City-county merger status quo is brutal. “You go first. No, you go first” he wrote in Saturday’s Post Gazette. A forum on Friday intending to kick start the merger debate show-cased clearly why it won’t happen. Politics.