I must admit since Inglewood began hosting it’s King’s parade years ago I must admit I was disappointed that this year’s event has morphed much more into a festival and arguably a show if you were to view it differently as it appears like Inglewood and most municipalities “celebrate” the life of the honorable Dr. Martin Luther’s King work and legacy but spit on the principles and ethics he taught and practices in an never-ending on slaught of introductions of legislation and/or policy that appears genuine in nature but upon further inspection causes more harm than advertised as some may argue with the arrival of Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts and his billionaire cohorts Rams owner Stan Kroenke and Clippers owner Steve Ballmer whom with affixing their signatures on lofty campaign and tax measure increase checks not only financed Butts and his handpicked footsoldiers that serve him loyally and while often walking that thin line of criminal complicity while routinely violating the rights of residents and others at taxpayers expense.
With that being said since today is Inglewood’s annual King celebration wouldn’t it be fun if we used a common quote that’s attributed to the late great Dr King in asking has Mayor Butts “led Inglewood into a burning house” so to speak as we are now witnessing the obvious challenges in “handling success” as the Mayor points out because if we were to grade the Mayor fairly, and that of the council, you could reasonably argue that not only did the Mayor and his cohorts lead Inglewood into a burning fire but it’s exploded beyond the boundaries of Inglewood as you can argue that Inglewood’s unprecedented development ignited speculation and gentrification in Inglewood and beyond and as a result exasperated the states homeless crisis, housing affordability and housing availability crisis because it doesn’t take a rocket scientist or Dr. Anthony Faucci to reason when billionaires start buying and standing by politicians like Butts who has had credible allegations of sexual harassment, retaliation and domestic violence charges against Black women then we have to question where we as a whole lost our moral compass.
Simply being said ask yourself what would Martin Luther King Jr. do.
I don’t want this to be viewed as an attack on James Butts or any elected official but I ask 2UrbanGirls readers to ride around either Inglewood or Los Angeles County and tell me Marvin Gaye’s ” what’s going on” doesn’t play in your head because something’s amiss out here and there’s a silent but powerful disconnect between elected officials and the folks they are elected to serve.
Like a Mexican standoff so to speak where the citizens are beyond understanding and demand results as to illusions of results and more now than never with many average Americans dealing with some health and/or financial issues are seeking answers to “kitchen table” discussions where demands for local government to expand its role as a “safety net” as our forefathers designed the government to be a hand up not a handout and definitely not to subsidize multi-billionaire’s pet projects with taxpayers funds while simultaneously making it unaffordable for the same people subsidizing these projects with their hard-earned tax dollars to live here.
It’s currently 52 degrees in @CityofInglewood which means this concrete is even colder. 🙏🏽🙏🏽 pic.twitter.com/p8lblDkqYz— 2UrbanGirls (@2UrbanGirls) February 16, 2023
I mean seriously if King were here would he celebrate the totality of the mayor and council’s shiny new toys that he brought to the City or would he greatly bemoan the fact that almost 700 houseless residents in Inglewood were sleeping in below-freezing conditions just days ago with Inglewood although abundant in resources lacks a year around Winter Shelter despite its noticeably growing homeless population.
Are you telling me that if Dr. King were alive today he wouldn’t likely be on the front lines leading massive protests in Inglewood about the Inglewood Transit Connector project, fighting for more hiring of people of color to work on these projects, and actually holding them accountable?
I guarantee you this had the late Dr. King had been alive today he would definitely bemoan the fact that attempts to tout themselves as “community partners” that the Rams, Clippers, sometimes the Chargers, NFL, and NBA are for show. Today’s the King celebration and noticeably missing as an event sponsor is the LA Chargers. Isn’t Dean Spanos’ sister suing him for not meeting their charitable contributions?
As the saying goes “too much given, much is required” and the fact that these partners haven’t been more ambitious in “freely” giving they in essence exemplify King’s analysis that when “one suffers we all suffer” and if many in Inglewood are suffering aren’t these billionaires by a moral obligation and a sense of responsibility required to give generously what they can from their resources to make Inglewood a less sufferable place?
I mean how much would it take for THREE billionaires to house 700 homeless people?
Isn’t that the least we can expect?
Isn’t what Dr. Martin Luther King’s life embodies for all to see love in action because celebrating his life and not imitating the words that he had for his fellow man is nothing short of dishonoring his life in pure and total hypocrisy.
In closing as I mentioned before it’s hard not to argue that Inglewood has changed but it would be time to ask if the late great Dr. King would celebrate these “changes” or yet be thoroughly disappointed that Inglewood’s changes resembled nothing close to the dream he spoke of on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1963.
It’s easy to see that Inglewood embodies everything contrary to what King saw in his famous I Have A Dream speech and although King was progressive in his thinking I can’t imagine he would support any changes that ushered in homelessness, especially under the guise of the “Inglewood Renaissance” and definitely not during a pandemic that took the lives of millions of people.
Marvin McCoy is a lifelong Inglewood resident and can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @MarvinM83905936
As normal Mr McCoy brings us to a place of seriously thinking about how the City has changed under the “Leadership” (?) of James Butts.
Among those everso significant realities is the honoring of the work of Martin Luther King. There was a time the concepts so important to the civil rights leader were not just spoken about in the 60 second speech made by the elementary student but we could actually see the prior council leadership as they included the everyday resident’s lives as they cast their weekly votes during council meetings. ALL RESIDENTS were treated with respect, their opinions considered and often council members voted no in agreement with concerns residents raised.
The recent storm should highlight the lack of compassion, consideration, our council has for those who actually need community assistance..There has been little if any outreach that the community can see for those who have no roof over their heads while the record breaking rainfall and cold weather blows through the South Bay.
Those who had no opportunity to be in housing could at least overnight in the Morningside Cafeteria.That options was certainly made public , yet while we pay big bucks to advertise the city sponsored parties administration did not seem to advertise that there was shelter space available specifically during the nights and days of deluge which brought snow down upon local mountains so low and so thick our mountains looked like a Hollywood set!
Thank you again to MCCoy for living out the ideals expressed by Martin Luther King.
Shall we pray together that ther will someday be more who understand
“Our lives begin to end , the day we become silent about things that matter” and
“To ignore evil to be accomplice with it”
Thank you Mr McCoy for not being silent in spite of Mayor Butts many attempts to silent you when you speak out about things that matter.