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“Moving into Petworth is not “urban pioneering”–a term I have significant problems with. The best way to arm oneself is with education and community involvement. Please look for ways to combat not only criminal acts but their precedents, such as lack of education, employment, and affordable housing. Petworth is a wonderful, vibrant community that is not defined by crime. It is and should be defined by the families that live here.”

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  • I am proud to say I am an Urban Pioneer, there is no negative connection to the term. This area has problems, and rather than run to the suburbs I choose to stay here and deal with them, even if it is frustrating. Neighbors who are in their 80’s who have lived here for decades have thanked me for helping them, and said they had given up a long time ago. A woman who lives behind me warned me about being in the alley after dark when I moved in a few years ago. She now takes walks around the block because she is not as scared as she used to be. I am not ashamed that my ultimate goal is to run off drug dealers and gangsta’s, even if they did grow up here. I am not ashamed that I have cleaned up an abandon house, and that I expect my neighbors to be up to code. These aren’t expectations I should feel guilty about. I support better schools, drug rehab programs, youth programs and everything that can be done to improve life for the poor, and as an Urban Pioneer I can help make all of that happen. The appathy by people who have been here their whole lives is sad, but they aren’t the people complaining about new comers. Its the “I don’t like having to respect other people” crowd that is complaining – the one who deal drugs, blast music at 1am, and don’t want to get a job who are complaining. Urban Pioneers provide new energy to an area that has lost hope, and that is not a bad thing.

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