Had a knock on the “V” around 9:30 and opened the door to two officers asking about “activity” going on in the alley. I told them the only activity I see is me taking Kayla for a doggie walk before bed. It’s been relatively quiet, or I’m a very heavy sleeper. Lots of questions were asked and normally I wouldn’t feel a need to answer them, but I liked these two guys and I want to think they get what we’re doing. They mentioned having a meeting with Luis Velez (Chief of Police) about doing some work together, especially with the kids. The more we support one another the better off we’ll be. We should try to figure out what the needs of the community are, or what needs to be done and work on it together. There’s no doubt we’re in an area that needs something. But we think it’s something different, something around music, art and things that make everyone feel they’re a part of the community. We also think it should be engaging and inclusive of the young. Finding out what their needs are and working to achieve harmony on the east side. There’s no doubt that tons of money has been spent in areas around here (like just over the bridge in downtown). But finally some action is happening here. The decisions made today are going to affect the general outcome of whether this is a thriving area inclusive of everyone, especially the Latino community who represent a huge percentage of the population, or whether it’s gentrified to the detriment of most and only advantages to a select few. Our vision of 4th-8th St. is one of music, art & local talent exhibits and “different” kinds of stores, colorful and exciting (like funky clothes & food), music instrument shops, cool coffee huts, tatoo artists, after school dances for the kids, pump tracks, skate parks and a bike lane into town, rather than Banks, Insurance Co. and Lawyers! Checking in with the residents might be a good start. We’ve started already…and thanks to Cory Heimark we now have a tree hugg’n hippie out front. More to follow as the kids get involved.
Earlier in the day we participated (Glen and I) in the Pueblo Human Resources Commission to which Glen was appointed recently and which he’s decided it might be too many meetings and not enough “gitt’r done” stuff. While one meeting shouldn’t always be an indication, I do feel there needed to be more in the way of a head on approach, call out the corruption and make the “higher ups” listen to the needs of the people regardless of money! If the city is still feeling the twitches of racism, perceived or not, then something needs to be done. The Latino community needs a strong voice and good representation. If after 12 years there are no significant “hallmarks” then I agree with Glen and it’s time to focus on things that will get done! Too many meetings and too much of the same old, same old, isn’t going to bring change. It’s just going to bring more of the same. New ideas, fresh approach, new people and lots more transparency and accountability…oh oh there’s those dirty words again!