I spend a wonderful month long Christmas vacation away from Amarillo. I returned to the doom and gloom of abandoned houses in my neighborhood. Last year, 2017, every house across the street from me was occupied with families and children. When I looked across the street on January 7, 2018 what I saw was a row of empty houses—five houses, six if you include the house facing a side street. As Marvin Gaye asked, “What’s going on?” What happened to the people? What happened to the young couple with the cute little girl who was born in one of the houses and is now 2 years old? I watched her grow up from my front porch—from her first baby steps to seeing her mom chase her down sidewalk. Next door were the neighbors with the dogs that barked incessantly at every other dog that walked down the street. Next door to them was the home health care worker—he moved to St. Louis. Next door to him was a family with teenage boys. Next to that house was another family with small children. They are all gone. No one is living on the entire block. Someone showed up yesterday and boarded up one of the houses.
Meanwhile the City of Amarillo is busy moving dirt for its new baseball park across from the downtown post office. The downtown streets have reopened after the infrastructure was put in place to accommodate Amarillo’s Liberty Square. A mile or so west as the crow flies “tent city” is still standing under the Cortez/Vaughn Washington Street connector. Porta-potties have been moved in to “accommodate” the residents. How did these people fare in 6 degree weather is the question.
Meanwhile Donald Trump is spewing forth his usual ignorance using foul mouth language to refer to peoples of color. I wonder if he would describe Amarillo, or the people living in the tents under the Washington Street overpass, as “s—thole” people? I wonder if Trump would describe my street of vacant houses as a “sh—thole” street?
In the meantime America is being burned to the ground by a madman. Jeff Flake finally said what everyone knows—that Trump is a “Stalin” rising. If you know history you know who Joseph Stalin was. If you read his life you can see very foreboding parallels to the madman in the Oval Office—the only exception is that Stalin’s egomania was combined with a bit of grey matter. Trump is just dumb—and an egomaniac. I am shocked that so people actually believed the “fake” so-call doctor’s report of Trump’s excellent health, especially his so-called “cognitive skills.” Just because you can recognize the letter “S” does not mean you can pronounce it—ask any child? And so it is with the buffoon in the Oval Office.
And so what do a block of vacant houses in Amarillo mean? The house with the little girl was a $650 a month rental. That landlord is now without that income. And the same goes for the rest of the rentals that are going unoccupied all over town-a town where one third of the single family homes are rentals. All over town tenants are struggle to pay rent. Two streets over another rental unit changes tenants every 4 months—in and out—struggling to pay $650 a month rent for a small two bedroom house. They come and they go—U-haul is doing a great business.
But the “red” voters in Amarillo want to get rid of all these immigrants renting these overpriced houses in Amarillo. As Trump said about the Haitians, “send them home.” A great Amarillo deserves vacant houses and vacant apartments. A great Amarillo deserves all white schools –fire all those white teachers teaching brown skinned children at Caprock, Travis Middle School, and Highland Park Elementary. Make Amarillo White Again—run all these immigrants out of Amarillo—round them up—send them packing. Stop these do-gooder Amarillo white churches from putting African immigrants in their church commercials—send them back to their huts in Africa. Amarillo’s new baseball stadium is for cheering white faces only. Make Amarillo great again!
Copyright 2018 – L. Arthalia Cravin. All rights Reserved. No part of this commentary may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without written permission from the author.