The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly…

This week in RI, Nov. 8, 2019 – Editorial

The Good

Michael Bloomberg

As we go to press, it is widely reported that Michael Bloomberg will enter the race as he declares for the Alabama presidential primary. Will this be the game changer it is being talked about? Is this the candidate that has a chance of winning against the President? Did the Democratic national party encourage and approve of this because they know Bernie is too old, and rather miserable in demeanor; Warren has shot herself in the foot with revealing the unaffordability of her “Medicare for All” plan; and others are beginning to drop out. Biden? He has the most to lose if Bloomberg proves viable. Just thinking of that first Trump-Biden debate makes one cringe. We’re not sure what column to put this news into – so for now, we say “the good”.

Veterans Day

Whether we work on this day or we don’t, let us remember this Monday is more than a day off. It is the time to remember the veterans in our families, those who have served, those who have died. Our country owes such debt to those who fight to keep us free.

The Bad

Protesting the First Lady

200 people (not reported thousands) stood outside a Boston hospital protesting the First Lady’s visit to bring attention to babies born addicted. When you protest everything, you protest nothing. Respect for a woman who is doing something on a national if not global platform, given all the problems she has in doing it, is something to be given generously. Put the protest signs away. Y’all look ridiculous. Misdirected. Go do something positive for the babies and children you care for.

Washing Machines & Org Charts

We’ll put this one in “The Bad” column. The plan to provide washing machines in schools was proposed prior to the state of the Providence schools being formally uncovered. It is something progressive city leaders have done in other states. To think time and resources were given on this method of reducing absenteeism when things were so bad tells us why things might have deteriorated to this point. You can’t correct anything without attention to basics. Yesterday we saw fights over new Providence school Org Charts. The new commissioner said “no” to any  Providence entity being on it – the Providence City Council said ‘wait just a moment here’ – so, we power grab and do the tug and pull – while the children don’t really care about any of it, nor benefit by it. While we will give a shout out to the philanthropists and nonprofit who funded the teachers’ wishes they had posted on a “go fund me-like’ site, we hope this doesn’t substitute for accurate budgets that don’t leave teachers having to do this – or paying for things themselves.

The Ugly

New York City’s homeless relocated to Rhode Island

The leadership of New York thought it was a good idea to help the long term homeless out of the city. We agree! Sometimes a change of venue can do wonders to pick someone up from a cycle of problems. But – where did they choose to help them relocate? To Rhode Island…and Hawaii, and 32 states in total.  This is not a few families, but over 5,000 in their “Special One-Time Assistance Program”.  Did they coordinate with due diligence with Rhode Island?  No, they did not, leaving the mayors of Woonsocket, Pawtucket and Providence blind-sided. Probably the 3 least likely cities in Rhode Island to be able to handle “more” of those experiencing homelessness. How about Barrington? Cranston? Wickford? Newport? Westerly? In any case, a big thumbs down to the lack of coordination – but not to the theory that a complete change might be just what the families need to lift them permanently up and out of the cycle of poverty and home insecurity. Let’s watch this “lively experiment” and what the future holds for these families now in our state. They have a year free rent. It’s time for the mayors – the the volunteers – to jump in now and assist.

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