A few people have asked if I really intend to run for Mayor of Greensboro in 2017? My answer is: Does Greensboro want change? Does Greensboro want to be the city other cities look to when they decide what changes are necessary to save themselves? Does Greensboro want transparency, opportunity, equal rights and success for all of our residents no matter their race, gender or socioeconomic background? Does Greensboro want jobs, prosperity and well being?
For you see, after I've finished writing all of If I Were Mayor Of Greensboro and if Greensboro wants me then I will run for Mayor of Greensboro.
So really, the choice is yours.
You see, people have been asking me to run for years so now it is time to see if those people really want me and are willing to step up and become the team we need to change one city for the better.
Greensboro suffers from a transparency problem. Too many people here view everything the City does as suspect. By the same token, my detractors sometimes claim myself and others waste city resources by submitting public information requests in attempts to learn the truth.
Well I've got a solution to both problems.
A couple of years ago Mayor Vaughan presided over a special meeting of journalists and bloggers to discuss the topic of public information requests. I attended that meeting. There I suggested the City of Greensboro put the information we are constantly asking for online in a searchable database where anyone could access it.
Greensboro's Internet Technologies Department was also in attendance at that meeting. They informed us the information is already online in a searchable database but is blocked from public view. They explained the info could be made public and kept safe at very little cost. And all they needed was permission from City Council to make it happen.
Mayor Vaughan and the Greensboro City Council continues to deliberately control what public information you and I have access to. As Mayor of Greensboro I would bring to vote a resolution to change that thus making Greensboro the most transparent city anywhere. And any council member who opposed it would be suspect.
When I wrote If I Were Mayor Of Greensboro: Part 7 I said:
"And in keeping my promise, how do we build a local manufacturing base that will keep people on the local assembly lines without having them replaced by machines? Well after we've completed steps 1-4 we can go on to use the assets, education, manpower and surplus properties of the City of Greensboro to build worker co-operatives where people come first.
Remember: the goal is to build a city where people come first."
To do that I would enlist the expertise of the Fund 4 Democratic Communities as they were instrumental in founding the Renaissance Community Co-op which is nearing completion and scheduled to open this year.
Unlike Councilman Mike Barber's First Tee of the Triad which has been hiding their Federal Form 990s for years, the Fund 4 Democratic Communities puts their Form 990s online for everyone to see.
You see, being transparent is easy when you're not a thief.
Co-ops aren't the solution to all of our economic woes but they are one solution that helps to build community and works best in working class communities too often ignored. With the help of the Fund 4 Democratic Communities we would design and train a Greensboro Department of Cooperative Development to carry us into the future.
And before I close today I'd like to bring up Greensboro's young people. Politicians love to talk about our youth but reality is: Politicians only talk about young people. And to prove my point you only need take in the following reports:
Earnings in the Greensboro-High Point area are among the lowest in the country for the 18-to-34 age group..
Greensboro Ranks bottom 10 in Equality of Opportunity Harvard Study.
In terms of healthy living and life expectancy, Greensboro, North Carolina is rated the 2nd oldest City in America:
Greensboro ranks sixth worst city for dating:
Greensboro was also named one of The Worst Cities To Start a Career.
Greensboro, North Carolina 95th out of the largest 100 cities in terms of citizens' ability towards upward mobility.
UNCG makes prestigious list...of students looking for Sugar Daddies, Mommas:
Greensboro Not Ranked For Future
Greensboro is the 7th worst city for dating.
"A newly released report from the Guilford County health department says that the rate of sexually transmitted infections in the county are not only some of the highest in the state, but in the nation as well."In other words, no one in charge of running the City of Greensboro gives a damn about our young people so why in the hell should our young people give a damn about Greensboro? Greensboro has become the armpit and butt-crack of the Southland under our current leadership and only by keeping our youth at home can we change that?
After all, where are all of you old bastards going to be when the kids all up and leave town leaving you here to rot? I'll be alone because I outlived my child-- will you be alone because you stood idly by and allowed Greensboro's status-quo to drive them away?
I'll talk more about our youth in If I Were Mayor Of Greensboro: Part 9.