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LOCAL VOICES: Retrospective view of Compton’s erosion

Retrospective: Compton's erosion will only cease when residents tire of promises and become 'conscientious voters on election day' By MICHAEL HILL, Contributing Writer Here is my retrospective on Compton's troubles. My fear is that individual Compton City

Retrospective: Compton’s erosion will only cease when residents tire of promises and become ‘conscientious voters on election day’

By MICHAEL HILL, Contributing Writer

Here is my retrospective on Compton’s troubles. My fear is that individual Compton City Councilpersons will not do an adequate assessment of their district and report issues to the city manager or staff for follow up. Until then, the erosion will continue.

Maybe I need to plug in more because [we don’t] know about some things until they’re over and done. Our city needs to do a better job at public relations — an observation I’ve made over time. For the city to think they’re informing us and we continually find out about things after the fact, isn’t the way I expected “transparency” to work.

Guess I’m just a little stupid and dumb. I used to think I was in touch with things. Shame on me for trusting so much.

Five people on the city council (including the mayor) and it seems none of them are effective in terms of the public trust. Another 7-Eleven is nice, but that’s the interest of the Southland Corp, not anything a civic leader fostered. I know this, having been on the planning commission whenever they come seeking a variance from the city. So guess I do know a little something, very little, about how things go, at times.

Better lighting fights crime; that’s a proven fact. Street signs that are visible as night aid first responders (fire, paramedics, law enforcement) To see the condition of some parts of the city where I grew up makes me angry, makes me want to weep. Too old to move elsewhere, so I just have to watch, while “Rome” burns.

We need more male leadership on city council as we had in past years, but most of the men are either sick, dead or alcoholics. Our root is dying, and the new people just seem to love photo-ops with presidential candidates, important leaders in government, while the city looks just as dark, unkempt and dirty as ever. Looks almost the same, in some places, as it did when we shot the video of Easy-E and NWA, back in the day.

The streets, alone, are in worse condition due to age. A Vietnam veteran by the name of Eddie Randolph, used to come to council meetings and speak during public comment, who always asked the same question: “Tell me, where is the money?” and we’d chuckle, No one’s laughing now. And most of us have given up hoping for better days, wishing someone would show they really care about all of us. Once we had such hope, but now, any reasonable person looking around, just has to shake their heads and wonder when will it get better for the city? My guess is when we all have had enough and decide to be conscientious about those we cast our votes for on election day.

Michael Hill lives in Compton.

Jarrette Fellows, Jr. is Publisher and Editor of Compton Herald. He attended junior and senior high school in Compton, and is an alumnus of California State University, Los Angeles.

1 COMMENT
  • Omar Bradley July 5, 2016

    Here’s a good question for citizens to ask, “Why is it that while we had the money to fix Central Avenue for years, we only decided to do it after the gigantic trucking operation was built at the Brickyard?” Also, we should ask, “Why the County is repairing El Segundo, 135th. Street, Rosecrans, and all the streets surrounding the Brickyard’s giant truck operation. Perhaps they aren’t fixing the streets for the people? Maybe the streets are being repaired for the profits? Now when Central is finished, the supporters of Aja will say, “LOOK AT THE PROGRESS!” But what will you the citizens say?

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