“I’ve been thinking a lot about some of the most recent (for want of a better word) gentrification-related posts on PoP, and kicking some of the issues (which one of my friends calls DC’s “Clash Of Civilizations”) around with some e mail buddies.
Last night, I was reading an interview with former Montgomery County politician Doug Duncan in the new “Washingtonian.” He works at the U of Maryland these days. When discussing his frustrations with PG County, he used the phrase “culture of low expectations.”
I think that phrase describes a lot of what newer residents of this city are coming up against. Years and years of familial and/or governmental dysfunction create what I see as a kind of poverty of the spirit, as well as deep seated self hatred.
Also keep in mind that government and monuments notwithstanding, this is really a small Southern city to the core. Certain aspirations are considered uppity (going out of town for college, for instance). Hell, my barber was nearly apologizing to me because she is now working with a nutritionist and doing yoga…. She was whispering, as if she’d shot someone.. That is the DC a lot of people don’t know. But this kind of thinking contributes to the aforementioned ” clash.”
Can a black woman (my barber) do yoga and take care of herself and not be considered an outcast? Good question…
These sketchy reflections are, at best, opinions/observations. I am not a hater, as I have said on PoP. In fact, I’m one of the people with a fair amount of disposable income, no kids-etc. Custom made for the changes so many of your readers want.
Of course, I neither belong to the young’uns coming into the city, or the knuckleheads (who see me as a sell out-bitch, what have you) In fact, I am looking into jobs outside of DC. It’s time for some proverbial new music.
I cant say I love DC- my 50 years here notwithstanding-but I think that many of your readers ( and you) are a big part of this city’s future. I hope someone wants to stay and make it better. It is truly crippled now.
Like I said, I’m just thinking out loud. Sorry this is so dang long. Long as a delay on the Red Line.”
It always makes me profoundly sad when I hear about good people moving out of the city. What’s your reaction to the above?