Dallas' Progress isn't just about flashy hotels like the W and its accompanying development. It's about the un-famous people who risk their lives to provide services to neighborhoods and put food on the table for their families.
Just 2 miles away from the W, on the other side of the Trinity (and for all intents and purposes, the world) sits Oak Cliff.
Oak Cliff is under siege. One of the many 'ground zeros' in Oak Cliff is at the corner of Denley and Morrell (map).
I was already working on a positive story about Chi's Grocery, the first new store in the middle of Oak Cliff in some time. Chi's store is on the corner of Denley & Morrell. Chi's Grocery is a success story, having been at another store at the same intersection for more than 10 years. He recently moved into a renovated store with more space, more items, and no burglar bars. As mentioned in the Dallas Morning News, Chi's Grocery is a store where kids can get items for upping their grades and seniors can get items on credit.
Chi's old store, now called the Morrell Food Mart, recently got a new tenant.
According to Shaun Rabb's Fox 4 News report, Morrell Food Mart quickly got a good reputation for having good breakfast and burgers. Two weeks after the store was opened, the owner is dead.
He was found beaten to death in the middle of the morning. In broad daylight, a man is murdered and his dreams shattered. The Grand Opening sign is still posted!
This is at least the 5th murder in the past few weeks in Oak Cliff. Just this week, there have been 2 other killings and several shootings.
Somehow, we have to get a handle on the crime in Oak Cliff. While the District 4 councilperson was clicking wine glasses at the W last night, ordinary citizens are just trying to make it. I wonder when was the last time she has been to Morrell and Denley. I would guess never, but I could be wrong. Everything is not political, but the ignoring of this area is political.
The W Hotel ...... Morrell & Denley. 3 miles apart...Totally different worlds. This is an area where some rent houses cost less per month than one night at the W Hotel ($320+) and a trip to the Ghostbar (drinks $15 and up).
I'm sure the residents would love to have a townhall meeting on crime, drugs, and gun violence. But I doubt it will happen. If she can make time to go to a hotel opening at Victory Park, can't she make time for the residents of her own district?
What's going to be done about the violence in Oak Cliff?