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Monday, April 12, 2010

Newspaper Rewrites Skate Park Site History

In a story last week about yanking the Palmer Park site away from Skate boarders. The Janesville Gazette wrote...
In the ensueing years, the best location was tossed around until last fall, when the council...
That is a deliberately misleading characterization. The best location was NOT "tossed around." The best location still is the best location, it is in Palmer Park. When Palmer Park was chosen in 2005, it was fully noticed, debated and approved by the Janesville city Council. That is indisputable. I have three links archived here including the city website itself that would refute the Gazette's deliberate mischaracterization. The City writes "the skate park will be located in Palmer Park."

The newspaper repeated their distortion word for word in another article just a few days' later.

Janesville's Shadow Government - The BlackBerry Group

And it is a select group of insiders (The BlackBerry Group?), who continue to rehash and juggle the process until it meets their specific satisfaction and goals regardless of what anyone else thinks. You see, when the city needs a site for a new ice arena or placement for baseball diamonds, they can come up with a multitude of prime locations, open ended contracts and a perpetual timeline for the so-called "stakeholding" establishment to choose from. But a skateboard park? The bias is genetically imprinted.

After officially choosing the site at Palmer Park several years ago, the city is suddenly back at it and for no good reason promoting a different site for the skateboarders. This time in a neighborhood park set in a cove on the southern border of the 4th Ward known as Monterey Park.
JG Excerpt:
The site would provide entertainment choices for a wider demographic, too, he said. “One piece of the supporting elements for Monterey was to provide a site with diverse opportunities for family activities,” said Tom Presny, city parks director. “Monterey Stadium is there, there’s a children’s playground and there’s fishing on the river.”
Obviously missing from Presny's group of diverse and wonderful opportunities of family activities was the batting cage facility that is currently across the street from the eastern edge of Monterey Park. Why is that? Well, because the city intends on pulling the batting cages away from good ol' "diverse" Monterey Park and install them on the east side of town - apparently to serve a less diverse band of establishment demographics.
Gazette Blog Comment
By the way, one thing makes this even more incredible. When the group trying to raise funds for the ice arena recently came back to the Council to ask that alternate sites be considered (because donors were asking about sites other than the south side), the City Council said "we decided this already" and refused to have City staff study alternate sites! Even though the ice arena project would cost millions more than the skatepark and even though group raising money for the ice arena has already raised a lot more than the skatepark group, with more than $600,000 committed toward an ice arena already! This is the same council that is having staff look at new sites for the skatepark! -- cougar21

Why a different skateboard park site is even being considered by the council when they recently refused to entertain a different site for the ice arena boondoggle is indeed another great observation. Again, city staff and the council went through great deliberations before settling on Palmer Park in 2005 and now without cause, reason or accountability have yanked Palmer unceremoniously away.

What the city is doing by swapping the skateboard park with the batting cages is correcting what they viewed as too close for comfort, the near miss accidental integration of Palmer Park. And by matching sports activities to a specific neighborhood, they are creating and solidifying a more segregated city. Knowing Janesville, this must be the idea of the city's diversity action team.

But what really lays at the root of the skateboard decision is readily scoffed at and denied primarily by the Janesville right-wing establishment: it is pure economic and cultural class discrimination. It needs to be fully exposed and remedied, not hidden, denied or scoffed at in order to root out this social cancer and finally set Janesville on a path of social and economic justice. Someday maybe.

I can already hear Glenn Beck say, "Hurry, run away from this pinko commie socialist hippie as far you can!"

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