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In response to Loose Lips writer Jeffrey Anderson’s piece last week about Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans’ questionable ties to the digital sign industry and his legislative efforts to make it easier for their products to proliferate throughout the District, Greg DuRoss took to the DupontForum email listserve to ask for an explanation: “Jack, your constituents in Ward 2 on these listserves are anxious to hear how your leadership in promoting billboards in the District, and quite likely in our Ward in the future if the proposed legislation passes, benefits them. … Please explain your position and provide your perspective concerning the assertions made in the Washington City Paper.” Evans responded curtly, “I don’t read City Paper.”
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Maybe he only reads things that flash and glitter. That was Evans’ last word on the matter. But another constituent offered an interpretation. “Translation: I don’t care if my constituents hate me. I just got re-elected unchallenged because corporate donations have so filled my coffers that no one was willing to run against me,” wrote Rob Halligan.
Responses to Housing Complex writer Andrew Giambrone’s piece on a citizen “sting operation” identifying a Columbia Heights apartment building turned de facto Airbnb hotel fell into two camps, which were perfectly defined in a brief Twitter exchange between two readers. Elie Litvin (@ElieLitvin) tweeted, “So?” and Ryan Andrew Clarke (@RyanAClarke) responded, “idk lower income people who actually need a place to live on a daily basis might want to live there.”
Litvin and Clark’s exchange was blunt, but it embodies the average resident tensions over any example of the District’s desperate affordable housing crisis. In his article on Ward 3’s collective meltdown over a proposed family homeless shelter, Giambrone quoted neighborhood commissioner Victor Silveira as saying, “This is not a NIMBY attitude. This is: There’s an elephant coming, can we cut it in half or in four so we can better digest it?” Robert Winship (@robert_winship) ate his lunch by responding on Twitter: “Victor Silveira confirms that Ward 3 residents know how to consume elephant, a known indulgence of the rich.”