Monday, November 14, 2005

Reparate or Secede!



On this very slow news day, when even Channel 6 is reduced to doing a long piece about a granny who sews clothes for premee babies, we here at TIG are reduced to sitting around the bar prognosticating. Today, we prognosticate about the implications of Tulsans For Better Government plan for restructuring district representation.

Opponents, Tulsans Defending Democracy, claim the restructuring plans by Chip McElroy et al in District 9 would dilute "minority and neighborhood representation." TDD claims the at-large Council posts are elitist hands at work to make Tulsa reflect the interests of the residents of one district, District 9.

But, TDD offers no alternative to fix what ails City Council, except hire better help for City Council. We here at TIG submit that it's not the people. It's the system, stupid.

The system is engineered to fail in a logjam of parochial interests causing innovation and the tax base to move to the suburbs. City Council is structured to eat itself alive.

Tulsans For Better Government has attempted to make progress. It is a plan to balkanize Tulsa, but at least they are trying. TIG has a better mousetrap: Secession.

TDD talks about minority representation as if it's some holy grail, actually unattainable by the real minorities of Tulsa. North Tulsa has never received any real attention from City Hall, except during Mayoral elections. Every Tulsa Mayor from the dawn of the City's first days has reneged on campaign promises made to North Tulsans.

Is it any wonder why North Tulsa always vote by not showing up at the polls? Every Democratic candidate wishfully counts on North Tulsa Democrats to edge them to victory, like a pie in the sky. And, North Tulsa always disappoints, simply because everyone knows South Tulsa Democrat elites always give lip service.

The two failed Doug Dodd campaigns illustrated this reality like a black and white John Wayne movie killing the commies. Contrary to what's on the voter registration cards, North Tulsa is actually a heavy Republican enclave. They vote Republican by not showing up.

North Tulsans are like the Iraqis. They wallow in the heavy baggage of historical oppression. They've given up the notion of determining their own destiny.

Every City Council meeting is invaribly interrupted by the very loud musings of the Alexanders. James and his wife come to Council meetings, yell and scream about the terrible sewer systems backing up into their neighborhoods. They yell and scream, but, nothing ever really happens. The Councilors sit up high and mighty, listening stone-faced, waiting for the Alexanders to finally shut up and sit down, and they go back to the status quo of the day.

Well, Mr. Alexander, the elite intelligencia of Tulsans for Better Government has handed you the perfect opportunity. You, Mr. Alexander, now have some real talking points to determine the destiny of your sewers. You, Mr. Alexander, now have a very real chance to be a mayor.

TIG looks back in history when Black Wall Street prospered with it's own transit system, groceries, and the best jazz in the world. For the sure pleasure of community, Greenwood was an institution that trumped any retail district Tulsa now has. Then, Tulsa Police and the State National Guard helped rioters reduced Greenwood to large swaths of vacant fields. We walk around Vernon AME and hear whispers of the sweet jazz, the bustling of Pine and Archer, in the zephyr.

Mr. Alexander, TIG urges you to respond. If the rest of Tulsa won't reparate North Tulsa for the sins of 31 May 1921 and plans to further marginalize North Tulsans, North Tulsa has every right to sit down in front of the bus and say, "I am mad as hell, and I am not gonna take it anymore."

Mr. Alexander, TIG urge you and North Tulsa, north of the railroad tracks, Tulsa's 38th Parallel, find the grave of Jefferson Davis, dig up the good earth, open up that fancy casket, steal that flag of oppression, and give it a whole new meaning: The City of Liberty Tulsa.

Mr. Alexander, your time is here. Segregation was actually the killer app of the success of Greenwood. Secession will be the same. Rebuild Black Wall Street on your own terms. North Tulsa doesn't have to sit in the back of the bus anymore.