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« Reason

Who are you tapping for Youngstown's future?

By Tyler S. Clark (Contact)


Published June 1, 2009

When Youngstown finds a balance in sustaining its population count, and when the unemployment rate returns closer to the national average, and when sustainable living is a local way of life, it will be because people--not governments--made it happen. That is to say that you are Youngstown's best hope, and you can not leave it to a hope that political leaders will be able to make it happen through grants and programs.

That's not to say that we won't need the help of grants and smart policies from lawmakers. But it will be the people who step up and take the reins and provide fresh ideas and energy whose names will be inscribed on the future monument of Youngstown's renaissance.

You've heard the names before, many of them profiled in Sunday's Christian Science Monitor article about how the economy is affecting the 2010 vision: Mark Peyko, Hunter Morrison, Phil Kidd, Bill D'Avignon, Sarah Lown, Father Noga... If you attended Streetscape last weekend or came to one of the cleanups that Defend Youngstown, Resettle Youngstown, TreezPlease or Snoop Block Watch held already this spring, then you're part of the solution, too. The City is working with these groups to provide materials and resources to take control of vacant properties and blight.

On the YSU campus, there are more than 13,000 students, many of whom are young and idealistic. Do you know any of them? Are you bringing them along and showing them how they can help, too? Frequently when I speak with students, they want to help and get involved, but they don't know how. You can show them.

A sentence in Sunday's article highlights the most pressing issue in the advancement of 2010: "local politics have meant that city funds are still apportioned to all neighborhoods – including the ones already deemed unsustainable."

Two questions for you:

1) How do we build the political will to make the tough decisions and address the urgent needs of the neighborhoods whose health is declining NOW and that need intervention to stabilize, rather than the neighborhoods whose problems are decades-old and whose needs, while no less real, are less affected by passing days than passing years.

2) Who else is making a difference that deserves a mention? There are so many contributors who are behind the scenes and not in the headlines. 


Comments

1westside(47 comments)posted 4 years, 10 months ago

Ian Beniston of the MVOC definitely deserves some recognition. He was instrumental in helping to organize the Idora neighborhood and co-wrote their neighborhood plan. He also is one of the main architects of the new Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation.

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2Nonsocialist(710 comments)posted 4 years, 10 months ago

This may be the second post where I agree with nearly everything you say (the fireworks entry was the first). I especially agree with the statement, "because people--not governments--made it happen." When did you develop this conservative philosophy, that people are the solution, and not the ruling class? I agree with you that the dark liberal philosphy that people must be controlled by the elites is wrong. It is true that people are good and that voluntary charity beats "social justice" and redistribution of wealth. Welcome to the land of the mainstream. I hope that together we can reform others and bring them over too, like Janine Garofalo if only she'd stop calling people who support responsible fiscal policy "rascists."

Anyway, my recommendation is that Youngstown liberate itself from the monocracy of Democratic Party rule. Don't look at the initial following the name, but at the persons background, criminal record, governing philosophy, long-term vision, and especially...why they are running. Is it a career politician looking to continue the power grab, or a citizen who stands forth because they have unique and compelling ideas.

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3redvert(2005 comments)posted 4 years, 10 months ago

20% of the voters really decide the outcome of elections. If you do not believe that statement look at any election where the same people vote in two or more races. The totals by party will be different for each race. This is because actual voters voted for the candidates. The other 80% vote a straight party ticket regardless of whether the candidates (any party or independant) were the best choice. When voters can look at the man or woman and disregard the party affiliation they will finally become part of the solution. In the recent presidential election thousands voted for president and nothing else. I will not get into what that says.

Remember some of the old sayings,

"when nothing changes, nothing changes"

"when we continue to do the same things over and over, we can not expect the results to change"

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4tylersclark(182 comments)posted 4 years, 10 months ago

@westside agreed; Ian is a good friend of mine and a real force for change

@Nonsocialist glad we can agree

@redvert thanks for your comments

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