One City


Gray’s Motives to Lessen D.C.’s Disparities Questioned

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Mayor Vincent Gray

Mayor Vincent Gray has been touting his “One City” mantra since his election last year. He said the economic successes west of the Anacostia River haven’t extended eastward, where most residents are black and poor. “My intention is not to pit one part of the city against another,” Gray said during his State of the District speech in March.

But some are skeptical, saying that “One City” efforts will be to the detriment of those west of the river. Harry Jaffe, in criticizing Gray’s leadership in a Monday Washington Examiner editorial, wrote:

… I suspect that “One City” really means Gray intends to move more services and government offices east of the Anacostia River, to Gray’s home turf, at the expense of the city’s white, western wards. There’s talk, for example, that Gray might close the Department of Motor Vehicles office in Georgetown, so residents living west of Rock Creek would have to renew their licenses and handle other chores downtown or at Penn Branch, east of the Anacostia. So — one city based in Ward 7? If “One City” is code for moving even more services east of the Anacostia, just say so.

To this, D.C. political guru Chuck Thies sent out this tongue-in-cheek tweet:

Shorter Harry Jaffe:Hey white people, Mayor Gray is gonna make you go to the ghetto to register your car. Be scared!
Chuck Thies

What’s your take: do you think efforts to lessen racial and economic disparities will be at the expense of west of the river folks?

D.C: One City?

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray delivered his State of the District speech Monday night, and to the dismay of reporters assembled, there was little to no mention of recent scandals or specifics on upcoming budget decisions. But he did mention “One City.” Seven times.

Other notable mentions: comparing crossing the Anacostia River to entering a new continent, allusions to food deserts and boat metaphors. Read the full text here, but here’s an excerpt that may be of particular interest to our readers:

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