For a long time, much of Greater St. Louis has believed the conventional wisdom that its 115 governments result from careful choices made by voters and calculated decisions executed by well-intentioned civil servants.
This myth of local control often results in the isolation of residents in their own neighborhood leading to the perception that others simply cannot “get it together.” From this myopic viewpoint, crime, social unrest, dwindling populations, and a struggling economy are the outcome of others’ poor decisions.
However, reality tells a different story...Read more
Originally published in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch April 19, 2016.
Neighborhoods and local accessibility are arguably the largest assets that St. Louis has to offer. Folks who live around you are also the same folks whom you see at school events, the grocery store and on the street. That tight-knit feeling is why so many people love St. Louis. Yet, our largest strength is, at times, also our largest weakness.Read more
The last time a unification vote occurred in St. Louis was in 1962—before construction on the Arch began. It was in the midst of the Civil Rights Movement and a year before Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech. 1962 was same year the John F. Kennedy announced an embargo against Cuba and avoided nuclear war.
If you were 18 in 1962, your are now 72 (the U.S. voting age was lowered to 18 in 1971). You would have been born during WWII in 1944 if you were 18 in 1962. For perspective, 1944 is same year Angela Davis, Tony La Russa, George Lucas, Patti Labelle and Jimmy Page were born. In 1962 Tom Cruise, Demi Moore, Matthew Brodkerick, Steve Carrell, Jim Carrey, and Jodi Foster were born.
It's safe to say most St. Louisans have never voted on unification. See the numbers...Read more
Alexander Hamilton, the man on the ten dollar bill, shut down the arguments against unification 229 years ago. While these statements apply on the large scale (a federal government and its state governments) the truths underpinning each statement apply just as much to the smaller relationships between county governments and the municipalities within them.Read more