Hijacking George Floyd: Mass Transit Edition

Katie Cristol

Here’s another example of how white  liberals are hijacking the George Floyd tragedy to advance their special-interest agendas on the grounds of social justice.

At the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission meeting last night, Chair Katie Cristol observed that “Systemic racism, and the opportunity to confront it, is present in every feature of our lives, including transportation. Public transit should also be an opportunity to further racial justice in our region.”

Added Secretary-Treasurer Jeff McKay: “We need to think about transit as an equalizer, as a human service, as a connection to our economy. … A key component of that is how we think about transit and how we factor transit into literally what could be a life-changing situation for so many families in Northern Virginia.”

Here’s another way to think about mass transit: Packing people into buses and commuter rail cars is a recipe for propagating the COVID-19 virus among the minorities most likely to ride them.

Here’s another way to think about social justice: If you want minorities to have better access to job opportunities, address the “affordability and access” crisis in automobile ownership.


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20 responses to “Hijacking George Floyd: Mass Transit Edition”

  1. Peter Galuszka Avatar
    Peter Galuszka

    Jim, inner city people rely on mass transit regardless of the pandemic. You have written about this for years as a Smart Growth advocate. Those dynamics have not changed. What’s with you? What has changed?

    1. The pandemic changed. We now know that buses and train are loci for the transmission of the disease. No one had focused on that before.

      1. Ben Slone Avatar
        Ben Slone

        Another major change coming – TaaS

  2. MAdams Avatar

    As someone who moved to Spotys from NOVA and who has used public transit. I did so I wouldn’t have to sit in traffic on 95 as I still work in NOVA. The mix of people who use public transit it probably 50-50, at best guess. If they want to talk about affordability how about they discuss the median house price in NOVA of $525K.

  3. Jim Loving Avatar
    Jim Loving

    Below is an open letter from a father in the UK of two American daughters. Sarcasm aside, I believe he may be onto something – perhaps this time, this murder (of George Lloyd) will prove to be a catalyst for systemic change for a long simmering systemic issue, the one previously refered to as our “Original Sin” (the one we have not yet fully confessed to, and among earthly judgers, have not yet been forgiven for) – the sin of “Manifest Destiny” for the white man, at the expense of the black and red man as we landed and moved westward.

    In the wonderful Ken Burns PBS documentary on the Civil War, Burns said something I thought profound (paraphrasing here even while using quotes): “The history of the US prior to the Civil War was in anticipation of it, and everything after it was the result of it.”

    We have never fully come to grips with the consequences of this history. The philosopher (and UVA grad) Steve McIntosh has written about our polarized culture and has had his main work approaching ways to bridge the cultural and political divide – you can read about him, his latest book, and other work at the Institute for Cultural Evolution – https://www.culturalevolution.org/. Steve definitely gets it and has wonderful ideas that, frankly, most people have not heard of and has little to no traction in our society today.

    But, in his books on evolution and progress, he speaks of the well known process of dialectical change and progress – the process of change through the conflict of opposing forces, whereby a given contradiction is characterized by a primary and a secondary aspect, the secondary succumbing to the primary, which is then transformed into an aspect of a new contradiction. Two steps forward, one step back.

    So to JB’s current post, and similar posts and complaints like it – namely progressive political correctness is going to be the end of us all (summarizing in one sentence). As in many things where change is involved, when something good comes along (post-modernism – and for this short reply you will have too allow me that there has been good – all people and all creatures of the earth are worthy and worth caring for and about, the ecosystem sustaining them is worthy and worth caring about, etc), the good often has overshoot and overreaction – political correctness and identity politics. Heck, even the extreme right that is now the GOP led by Trump has even adopted and co-opted the values of post-modernism – there are no truths except mine (relativism) and “we” as in conservative white people, are the ones under attack.

    So back to the open letter and my point. If society puts off addressing a long simmering, long festering issue, never having, or offering “truth and reconciliation” about shared history, then sometimes a spark is made, a fuse lit, and change rushes in – sometimes not always positive change because it was not arrived at through reason, and collaborative design.

    Backlash follows backlash follows backlash, rinse and repeat. I suppose that is how we progress.


    1. djrippert Avatar

      George Floyd died because the incompetent liberal mayor of Minneapolis failed to make good on his campaign promises to reform the Minneapolis police department. Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer charged with murder in the death of George Floyd, shot one suspect, was involved in the fatal shooting of another, and received at least 17 complaints during his nearly two decades with the department, according to police records and archived news reports.

      Where is the outrage that Derek Chauvin was still on the force and on the streets two and a half years after a liberal mayor promising police reform was elected?

      The truth is that liberals talk a lot of smack about this or that but never get around to fixing much of anything. Chauvin should have been off the force long before he had the chance to murder George Floyd and honest liberals know that. But demanding accountability and competence from princes of modern liberalism like Mayor Frey is counter to socialist messaging. So, the rhetorical incontinence of “institutional racism everywhere” is substituted for what should have been an easy decision to terminate a chronic miscreant like Officer Chauvin before he could kill again.

      1. TooManyTaxes Avatar

        I read today that Chauvin was a training officer for the two newest officers who were involved in the George Floyd murder. Still not enough for any condemnation of Frey from the Democratic Party or their arm the Media.

        1. LarrytheG Avatar

          I hear there are big changes being contemplated for the Minneapolis police… probably pas the time when it should have been …

          Many police dept have folks like Chauvin in the ranks and yes, they are senior officers who supervise and train new folks.

          We’re seeing excessive police force across the country – in full view of cameras… it’s like they don’t care…

          Give the protestors credit – some change is going to happen… more than has happened in the past.

          This won’t be the end of it…. in Minneapolis or other cities…

          Still would like to see a consistent and uniform standard for police behavior… apples to apples – nationwide… We had to create a national law for hate crimes – and we may have to do that for policie behaviors… and hopefully Organeman is kept busy doing other stuff.. rather than calling out more troops…

  4. djrippert Avatar

    Yes, the mass transit operation known as the Washington Area Mass Transit Authority is a stunning example of success! How about Cristol and McKay start by defining how to fix the fiasco we already have. Oh, I forgot. The liberal elites can never be held to account for the failures of their own institutions because “institutional racism” is everywhere.

    MAdams makes a good point, “… how about they discuss the median house price in NOVA of $525K.” Maybe they can start by taking a long and loving look at how affordable housing has been managed in a long time Libtopia like Chicago. Cabrini-Green is a classic example of Libtopia in action. A housing project of dubious reputation Cabrini-Green had the misfortune of being located in an area of Chicago that was gentrifying and well served by various transportation arteries. Remembering that the liberal elite ALWAYS profit from the socialism they foist on others – what do you think happened? The housing projects were demolished, re-developed into expensive housing and sold. What happened to the former residents of the Cabrini-Green housing project? Nobody really knows because such things are not tracked in Libtopia.


    1. “The liberal elite ALWAYS profit from the socialism they foist on others.”

      Intriguing observation. I’ve been heading that direction in my commentary, but I have never stated the proposition so baldly. The theme is worth pursuing.

      1. djrippert Avatar

        The conservative elite profit too but they are a bit more open about it!

        1. sbostian Avatar

          Your comments remind me of a 1969 classroom discussion with one of my better university professors regarding social division. He asserted (and in 50 years of observation of social dynamics I cannot debunk his assertion) that there are only two genuine class distinctions in most societies: elites and non elites. All other class, race and ideological distinctions are artificial and part of the genuine elite class’s divide and conquer, continue to divide and rule methodology. His follow on assertion was that elites take care of elites before anything else gets done.

          It certainly explains the Uniparty phenomenon in American politics. Hence, when imprudent policies are imposed on society elites on both sides of the apparent divide become wealthier and more powerful.

          Although the language is pretty coarse, George Carlin’s monologue about the club that you are not part of summarizes the situation pretty neatly.

        2. LarrytheG Avatar

          foolish talk IMHO. How many “elites” are there in NoVa out of the 2-3 million that live there?

          how do “elites” cause the price of housing to go to 500K ?

  5. TooManyTaxes Avatar

    “Systemic racism, and the opportunity to confront it, is present in every feature of our lives, including transportation. Public transit should also be an opportunity to further racial justice in our region.”

    What does this mean? If WMATA can’t even keep buses and train cars clean, how can it fix society? The Turds at WMATA shut down the Silver Line this summer just as it was beginning to pick up ridership. They didn’t consult with Fairfax County or businesses in the Tysons and Reston corridor areas. A lot of lower income people rode the Silver Line to jobs in Tysons. Will the rail shutdown hurt their ability to get back to work and get paid?

    What we need is Katie signaling virtue with Jacob from Minneapolis.

  6. Peter Galuszka Avatar
    Peter Galuszka

    Cabrini Green is long gone. I worked in Chicago for a couple of years back in the 1980s not that far from the place.

    1. djrippert Avatar

      I lived and worked in Chicago in the 1980s too. Lived in the same building as “Mr T”. Spent a lot of time in Lincoln Park after work. I distinctly remember Cabrini Green. Huge place, something like 70 acres. Terrible reputation. Given that my Father moved to Chicago after I went to college and my wife and her family are from Chicago (many still live there) I kept up – even after I moved back to Va. The last Cabrini – Green building was torn down in 2010. The announced demolition was delayed again and again as the residents wondered, “What happens to us?”. Promises were made but nearly none were kept. The people living in Cabrini-Green were largely put out on the streets to fend for themselves. Chicago’s government was supposed to manage the residents with relocation caseworkers. Never happened. The land was too valuable and the people too poor to do anything about it.

      Any chance you were there when Mayor Jane Byrne made the comical decision to move into Cabrini-Green (along with an army of security)?

  7. I see no racism in our neighborhood, with many people of different ethnicities. Can Katie please tell us in what specific says WMATA is systemically racist and what she recommends doing to correct this racism?

    1. Steve Haner Avatar
      Steve Haner

      Failure to see systemic racism in every direction is proof of your own racism, Fred. Careful. That dialectic process of history Loving discusses above (now where have I heard that? Groucho Marx? Harpo? Somebody Marx….) will roll right over you and me if we don’t line up.

  8. kerry Avatar

    I saw a study more than a decade ago showing a dramatic correlation between owning a car and having a job. That was one of the reasons I argued vociferously against Obama’s nutty “cash for clunkers’” plan that took affordable, drivable old cars off the road, making it even harder for the poor to find used autos. A sop to the environmentalists that no doubt contributed to unemployment.

    1. TBill Avatar

      Especially in Virginia we tax the living daylights out of new cars. That is counter-productive for many reasons. Actually I would say Virginia is already almost tax free for lower incomes. We hit mid incomes hard, over about $100K. I am not sure how much more we can do there. I would say Md. probably hits lower incomes harder , but they are staring to say they have to change that.

      PS- I loved Cash-4-Clunkers…I was hoping for a re-do. I traded in a old minivan at the time.

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