“As I’m sure you are already well aware, today is National Tequila Day! You’ve had your calendars marked for months, and today is finally the day! In honor of this important holiday, we’re offering 20 percent off our wide selection of tequila and mezcal all night long!”
I do not send this email (and attached photo) as a malicious attempt against the Metropolitan Police Department – this is why I do not include a face or any identification in the photo. I merely want to point out room for improvement on part of the MPD. Since moving to Columbia Heights last fall I have been shocked by the lack of in-person police presence. The only police presence I regularly see occurs on the alley I live in. At least 3-4 nights per week there is a squad car regularly parked overlooking Girard, about once or twice a month they also bring out the floodlights. I am not questioning the efficacy of the squad car and lighting – they are obviously effective in deterring crime in the immediate vicinity. What I would like to question is the lack of in-person police presence in this area and Columbia Heights as a whole.
On my way home from evening class last night (7/22) around 9PM I could see the police headlights as I approached the alley on my final stretch home. I chuckled to myself and thought: “I wonder if the officer will be attentive or on their cell phone?” Sadly, the latter is typically the case. I decided to have my smartphone ready to see if I could document this. Sure enough I was able to walk DIRECTLY in front of and then to the side of the vehicle (within 3 feet of the driver’s window) without the officer ever looking up from his cell phone. This occurred over a 30-40 second period. As you can see, the officer’s thumb is clearly on the phone while he is texting. I was completely flabbergasted by the fact that this guy didn’t notice me until the flash of my camera went off. One then begins to wonder what exactly these police officers patrol.
I wonder how much more crime would be deterred if these officers were not allowed to use personal cell phones on the job, or if they went out in teams of two – one officer remains with the stationary vehicle while another patrols a 4-5 block radius on foot.
Again, my attempt is not to be malicious but to simply point out some poor behavior on part of the MPD, there is clearly room to improve. “To serve and protect”, is that how the saying goes?”
“Why is Meridian Hill Park sometimes called Malcom X Park?”
A question we’ve been debating for quite a long time. One commenter has said:
“From the Historic American Bldgs Survey: “The park is also known as Malcolm X Park, however, that name cannot be officially adopted because the name of a park with a presidential memorial [President James Buchanan] cannot be officially changed under federal regulations.”
“The park has had a long and varied history. In 1819, John Porter erected a mansion on the grounds and called it “Meridian Hill” because it was on the exact longitude of the original District of Columbia milestone marker, set down on April 15, 1791 at Jones Point, Virginia by Major Andrew Ellicott assisted by Benjamin Banneker, an African-American astronomer and mathematician. It was to this mansion that John Quincy Adams moved when he left the White House in 1829. At that time, the entire high ground surrounding the park was known as “Meridian Hill.”
Construction was begun in 1914, but it was not until 1936 that Meridian Hill reached the full status of a formal park. In 1933 the grounds were transferred to the National Park Service.”
“A leader of the Black United Front began referring to the park in honor of the civil-rights leader on the one-year anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., says Simone Moffett, cultural-resource specialist for Rock Creek Park, the organization that deals with administrative issues for Meridian Hill. DC residents later voted for the name to be officially changed to Malcolm X. A bill to change the name was introduced to Congress in January 1970, says Moffett, but didn’t pass.”
So what do you guys call it, Meridian Hill, Malcolm, Malcolm X Park or Meridian Hill/Malcolm X park?
“We are excited to host our 2nd Anniversary Party! This year we will have 2 seatings. Our menu will include: Smoked suckling pigs, whole smoked goat, duck platter with Confit, breast bacon and pate. We will also serve a variety of sides plus deserts with surprise chef specials as a thank you to our customers! Each ticket will also get 3 drink tickets good for wine or beer.”
This week’s prime scuttlebutt is likely to excite half and infuriate the other half. Ed. Note: It seems that most of the Columbia Heights/14th Street scuttlebutt I post has a similar division. Back in Dec. 2013 we learned that Lime Fresh abruptly closed their DC USA location in Columbia Heights (they still have a spot open in Chinatown.) Since the closure, lots of folks have been wondering who will take over the 14th Street space by Target. I’ve heard that a Chick Fil A is strongly considering coming to the space. Nothing in stone yet but I’m hearing it’s a very good possibility. Stay tuned.
A bunch of hipsters decided it was really cool to burn the American flag on the 4th of July.
It was around 7ish and the alley between Fairmont and Girard was in full party mode with loud music and BBQ. Then about 10 to 15 individuals, a mixed group with black and white in their late 20′s early 30′s came out on the deck over the garage with a flag upside down and then set it on fire. The property is a rental with constant change and the owner lives in New York.
The flag took a long time time to catch on fire and eventually caught the attention of the many parties going on in the alley. Many people started yelling at the flag burners. The flag burners then started shouting about US imperialism and suppression of the blacks. Somewhere in the yelling there was also comments from them about how bad Obama was. Eventually, the flag caught on fire and started blowing chunks of flames very close to the cable and electric wires. At this point I called 911.
Eventually 911 sent police over and at which point the flag burners went inside except for about two of them who then denied setting the flag on fire. Most of the neighbors came out and a rather heated argument ensured. I am not sure what occurred after but the flag burners went inside.
I am quite aware one allowed to burn the flag as freedom of speech. It was ironic that they decided to do it in the alleyway to incite the local crowd and then run in when the police came.”