Thanks to all the readers who sent in her column from this morning’s Washington Post titled: Columbia Heights still has far to go. She concludes the piece with this:
“On Thursday, as Oscar’s family was preparing his funeral arrangements and kids stayed away from the playground, the Prince of Petworth blog posted a reader’s complaints about the neighborhood. The reader, who has lived in Columbia Heights since 2002, was devastated by the lackluster service at the sleek new coffee bar half a block from the building where Oscar was killed.
“I ordered latté and it was a disaster. The latté smelled and [tasted] so bad I only had one sip and that was it,” he complained. He was also frustrated that there was never room to sit in the little shop.”
You know it’s a shame she decided to take the easy way out by taking an unrelated post out of context. Regular readers of this blog know that we regularly talk about serious issues, including crime, quality of life, schools etc. This site discusses 75-100 posts a week. Yes, some discuss coffee shops. They too are a part of our community. But it’s not like we didn’t and don’t discuss the horrible crime that exists in our communities. PoP readers, the same ones who complain or enjoy coffee shops, also donate countless hours volunteering at schools, libraries, mentoring programs, churches etc.
Her decision to include that quote is like me picking up the Post on the day after the Fort Hood massacre and quoting a piece from the sports page lamenting the state of the Dallas Cowboys. Yes, Fort Hood and the Cowboys are both in Texas but that doesn’t mean that the two items are related.
Columbia Heights does still have far to go and so does the Post’s coverage of this great and diverse neighborhood.
I’ll add a note written to the columnist by a reader who sums up the situation far better than I:
“Your column today would have been really good if it wasn’t for the intentional deception you added at the end to portray newcomers as shallow self-absorbed yuppies. PrinceofPetworth’s blog had a section dedicated to this murder where people listed all sorts of ways they are involved in trying to reduce crime, but your article referenced a separate issue about service at a coffee bar as if it was related to this event.
Never before have I lived in an area where newcomers and old timers alike are working together so hard to improve a community. Some of the same people who frequent coffee bars are working with groups like Mentoring Works, In the Streets, and DC Youth Power Network. In this area of Ward 1 black/white rich/poor are working together in a lot of creative ways to improve life for everyone living here, rather than move out to the suburbs where they can live in peaceful bliss. I really resent that you chose to lay insult to our diverse community rather than explore the positive ways people are working to improve the situation around here.