I was born in 1973. According to last night’s hour-long WETA documentary, Washington in the ’70s, I missed a golden time that included the birth of home rule and go-go, Petey Greene, and Marion Barry before he sold out. Even more remarkable, the documentary showed that there was a time when the District’s own residents galvanized across racial and class lines, and protested serious issues.
Can you imagine a highway running down U Street? Can you imagine another highway cutting up most of Dupont Circle? Both were possible. Both were planned. And both never happened because District residents stood up, organized, and protested.
When was the last time District residents stood up for something?
There are plenty of issues worth organizing around. The AIDS rate is still really bad. The District’s unemployment rate reached 12.1 percent in December. The DeOnte Rawlings case still stinks. And we have a mayor who won’t hold weekly press conferences (that’s for journalists to protest).
The other big event from yesterday….Prince of Petworth‘s reporting that Polly’s has closed. The bar will be missed.