@NWestoll @ryanlev I'm sure I still have a box or two of those around as well
@NWestoll Jeopardy game for the Commodore 64.. on a 5.25 inch floppy disk. Like I said.. #iamold
Who's jealous? (Or who even knows what this is?) #iamold http://t.co/FZD9t10vYw
@brundle_fly Don't worry Pinocchio, some day you'll be a real boy
Interviewer: So the HWDSB sold the Scott Park a property only to buy it back 10 years later?
Interviewer: What are you doing with it?
HWDSB: Oh we’re closing 3 other schools and building a mega-high school.
Interviewer: So all the lower city kids will go there?
HWDSB: Well, no, it is already too small even though it only exists in the Board’s imagination, so some kids will be shipped out to Westdale
Interviewer: Isn’t Westdale already over capacity?
Interviewer: When you confiscate crack from students’ lockers, where does it go?
HWDSB: What does that have to do with anything?
Interviewer: Oh, nothing.. nothing at all.
Like any major urban centre recovering from rough times, one of downtown Hamilton’s biggest problems has been overcoming street crime and its effects. King and James and the blocks surrounding it were long avoided by many Hamiltonians. While the situation has vastly improved over the past few years, to say the problem has completely disappeared wouldn’t be entirely honest, but things are moving in the right direction.
Downtown’s poor image persisted for so long that entire generations of people turned their back on the core, deciding it was too dangerous for themselves and their children. Even now, any survey of suburban or rural Hamilton residents would likely indicate that crime (or the perception of crime) would be a key reason that they still avoid going downtown.
Recent years have seen a rebirth of downtown thanks largely to the more open minded (and financially creative) arts community and its ability to attract a lot of people back into the core. While this brought a new generation of folks back downtown, this wasn’t enough to override the lasting perception that Hamilton’s downtown was somehow more dangerous than the core of any other similar Canadian city. We still have some work to do.
So how do you fight crime? You hire more police. How do you make an area of a city FEEL safe? You put those police officers in bright yellow jackets, on the street, on bikes and on foot in highly visible locations. If you think that seems obvious, simple and effective, you’d be right, so that’s exactly what the Hamilton Police Service did. And it’s working.
Enter Ward 8 Councillor and Police Services Board member Terry Whitehead. In a recent CBC.ca article, Whitehead said: “I showed two pictures earlier today of officers on the ACTION team sitting on a corner for 45 minutes”. He noted that they were handing out traffic tickets, saying “A lot of people don’t see the value in that.”
The great irony of Whitehead’s complaint is that the fact that people are noticing the presence of the ACTION team and talking about what they’re doing is proof that they are serving their purpose: to be a highly visible police presence to act as a deterrent to crime. In the case of Whitehead’s example, they were ALSO handing out tickets. Had an emergency occurred in the core (Hamilton’s densest employment sector and residential area) then they certainly would have been called on to assist and been in a perfect position to do so.
We always need to look at policing and police budgets with a critical eye. While policing is obviously a necessity, we need to be on the lookout for ways to make the service more efficient and accountable. The ACTION team has always been exactly that. They are an omnipresent signal to those working, living and playing in the core– and those who might decide to commit crimes– that we are willing to invest time and energy to keep people there safe. Many would call that a very efficient use of personnel and of taxpayer dollars. It’s a shame that reality has been lost on Councillor Whitehead.
There are just a few hours left to contribute to Joey’s crowdfunding campaign and help him reach his goal. Since his first campaign, Joey has made good on his commitment to livestream and record countless City, Board of Ed, and Police Board meetings (still freely available for anyone who wants to watch them). He has also been pushing for greater accountability and transparency by pressing to have all agendas and minutes posted online in a timely fashion. By shining a light on our City’s leaders and their processes, he is single-handedly changing the way things are done at City Hall.
While he is a professional journalist, he is independent. He does not have the luxury of a steady paycheque from either a media corporation or the City. In order to continue and expand this service, he’s relying on citizens to contribute whatever they can. He has already had over 100 people contribute during this round, proving that he he has wide community support, and that people value his efforts. Please consider making a donation.
1) From York and Bay, board Burlington Transit’s 1-Plains Road bus.
2) Get off at Brant and Fairview.
3) Take the 2-Brant (South) bus to John St. Terminal.
4) Board the HSR 11-Parkdale.
5) Get off at Queenston Rd., and wait for the HSR 1-King or 10-Beeline. (westbound)
6) Get off at King and James and walk to York and Bay
Congrats, you have just completed the Around the Bay Road Race for lazy people like me. And it probably only took you 4 hours!
Note: Bonus points if after getting off the last bus you stop at the Taco Bell in Jackson Square before heading to York and Bay.