If you follow me on Twitter, or if you follow @TeamMoroski (managed by @Paigetastic01, @HeckmannMichael & @RyanBirdNT) then you will have noticed that we are trying to get #52equals1 trending.
There is no more important trending topic on which to focus.
Every other issue that we are all spending so much time on – from streetcars to parking to budgets – is directly tied into the equation, #52equals1.
I penned a post not so long ago titled, “What Can 52 Do For You.” In an effort not to sound redundant, this post is intended to get at the Heart of the 52 neighborhoods in Cincinnati – not simply another post in which I claim to love all 52 of them. (Well, this post may have some of that in it as well – I cannot avoid it.)
As I have stated on this site – I have lived in three of Cincinnati’s unique neighborhoods – North Avondale, Pleasant Ridge, and Downtown. I have worked in Over-the-Rhine, East Walnut Hills, Lower Price Hill, Northside, and Mt. Auburn. One of this things I have always liked about Cincinnati is how DIFFERENT each community is. The personalities of the neighborhoods could not be more distinct if they tried. In Atlanta, where I grew up, there were idiosyncrasies in the City’s neighborhoods, but nothing compared to Cincinnati. And Cincinnati has far fewer people than Atlanta – so, what does that tell you? It tells ME that the citizens of Cincinnati have BIG personalities and truly CARE about their neighborhoods. They care so much that they are willing to stand up proud and scream it from the rooftops of Price Hill, Mt. Washington, Sayler Park, Westwood, Hyde Park, Oakley, South Fairmount, Clifton, Riverside, Bond Hill and more. You can even hear the 248 households in Paddock Hills screaming out for attention.
But who’s listening?
If you were to pay attention at neighborhood Community Council meetings the answer to that question would be, “NO ONE.”
Now, I am not saying that NO ONE at City Hall listens. I AM saying that this is how the neighborhoods feel. And, as we all know, perception is reality.
It is time the neighborhoods had someone they feel listens to them. These people already exist on City Council, but we can do better. I have said it many times, and I stand by it – I am running to serve as a voice for the voiceless. There are too many people in our neighborhoods who feel that they do not have a voice. If our City is to move forward, this HAS to be addressed.
There are many in our low-income neighborhoods that feel the City is playing a shell game with our homeless & social service population.
There are many in our middle and upper income neighborhoods who feel they have never received a valid explanation of the streetcar.
There are many ALL OVER our City that feel the dwindling Neighborhood Support Program (NSP) funds is indicative of City leaders’ disdain for the neighborhoods.
Regardless of how much, or how little, truth is in these statements – they are a fact. It IS possible to discuss the streetcar in terms of neighborhood development, but it takes time and it takes courage. It IS possible to reinvest in the Downtown core and NOT move social services and make them someone else’s problem. It IS possible to keep Anna Louise Inn and the Drop Inn Center in their long time locations.
I relish in having these conversations. More so, I relish listening and learning. Just ask Michael Heckmann, Neighborhood Outreach Coordinator, or Nick Tilly, Volunteer Coordinator – they have been spending as much time as me in our neighborhoods and they have heard these same things. They LISTEN. Every single day, Michael, Nick and I are creating ideas for the long term financial stability, safety, and vitality of our 52 neighborhoods.
I run for all 52 neighborhoods. I will do my best to represent all of you. And, until I figure out how to bi-locate 26 different times, be on the lookout for Michael and Nick. They will be in a neighborhood near you – count on it.
In closing, I will close how I close many of my speeches at Community Council meetings:
I do NOT promise to vote the way you want me to vote every time. I do NOT promise to say things that you will agree with all of the time.
I DO promise that even if you disagree with how I vote you will understand why I voted the way that I did, because I will (as I have always done) go to great lengths to explain why I feel the things that I feel. I DO promise that I will return your phone calls when you call my office.
Lastly, I DO promise to listen. Every time. Every day.
To contact Team Moroski with your unique neighborhood concerns, use any of the addresses below:
Michael Heckmann: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nick Tilley: email@example.com
To contact me, simply do so through this website.