With Mayor Luke Ravenstahl stepping out of the race it has become a free for all which makes it the right time for a Black person to get into the race. And my choice is Tim Stevens.
No I haven’t talked to him and this is going to be a complete surprise to him. Nor do I think he would actually run, but I think he would be a higher quality candidate and better for this city and the Black community in particular than any of the candidates currently running.
Even though Tim has been a civil rights and human rights activist for 20 or more years he has not created the kind of animosity and hatred that people like Harvey Adams and other civil rights leaders created. Blacks and Whites in all walks of life respect him, rich, poor and middle class like him, whether they agree with him or not. That’s why I think he would be a good mayor. We would finally get someone who is going to fight for all the people, not just the select few.
And he has proven he can work with Whites, because the majority of the people in the civil and human rights struggle in the city and metropolitan area are White. And when you talk about grass roots, you can’t get much closer than his supporters.
Yes, I think it would be one of the better moves this city has seen. If a young 26-year-old kid can turn this city around, just imagine what a dedicated veteran like Tim could do. I’m just sayin’.
I know this will never happen. We will have to settle for one of the mass number of politicians who have thrown their hat into the race. Joining Bill Peduto, and Michael Lamb is Darlene Harris, Jim Ferlo and there are rumors that County Councilman Bill Robinson, and state Rep. Jake Wheatley may enter the race. If Robinson or Wheatley enters the race they will follow in the footsteps of the select few Blacks who have run for mayor. To my knowledge they are: Carmen Robinson, Hop Kendrick, Rev. James Sims, and Byrd Brown.
Hats off to Connie Parker.
I love what Connie Parker has done so far after winning the election for president of the Pittsburgh NAACP. She has made some outstanding moves so far. In her early stages she is making an effort to re-attract young people to the Civil Rights organization by seeking them out to work on various committees.
The reason the NAACP and other groups were effective during the 1960s was young people. Yes, older people such as Bob Pitts headed the committees but young people made up the committees and did the bulk of the leg work needed to bring about the many changes we saw all over this country.
Now I must admit I would like to see Deborah Walker and Marcella Lee become more involved. I know they were the competition before the election but now is the time to get all NAACP members involved in the struggle. We can’t afford to waste talent. I’m sure there’s something they can do to help. They could be the veterans heading the committees helping give the young adults the guidance and direction they need.
There’s no such thing as too many people or too much talent. Use them all. We need every mind we can get.
One of, if not the biggest tragedies in the Black community is all the Black on Black deaths. So far this year there has been 11 homicides. Which isn’t bad compared to most big cities, such as Chicago, Detroit, Atlanta, Los Angeles, D.C., St. Louis, or others. But one life is one too many. But what really stands out about these homicides is that 9 of the 11 were Black. That’s 9 of 11. For those of you who have problems with math, there have only been two White homicides so far this year. Two!
I know some are saying that ratio has to come down. Oh, but it doesn’t. In the previous years the percentage has been in the same general area, 70 to 80 percent range of Blacks to White homicides. And that’s not just Pittsburgh but all over the country.
In all fairness there have been more groups, people, churches, organization over the past 10 years working to curtail these senseless murders and they have had positive affects, but we have to continue to work to get it across to our young men, that violence is not the answer to their problems, and there are far more better ways out there to make money than drug trafficking.
We must continue to work to make sure these young men are exposed to the many other careers available to them, by helping them realize that they must continue to work to be prepared for them, by staying in school and realizing that quitting is not an option. Our ancestors didn’t and they faced far more obstacles than the youth of today.
(Ulish Carter is managing editor of the New Pittsburgh Courier.)
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