Wednesday, March 26, 2014


I wasn't here in 2005, but I sure got an earful about the proposed Metrolink to St. Charles.

I'm white, and for reasons I have never understood, a lot of people (black and white, rich and poor) think I am wealthy.   Or from a wealthy background.  (Neither is true.)

In 2008 I was working at a place where an older white man from St. Charles was my boss.  Basically, with a guy like this, he assumed I had the same opinions he did.  (He was a good boss to work for, but secretly I found his personal life and opinions revolting.  He was my boss, however, so I admit I usually kept my mouth shut.)

One day he regaled me of the tale of how he and many other white, middle-class, "concerned citizens" successfully fought the Metrolink expansion into his neighborhood.

"We couldn't let those people come to our neighborhood," he said, after admitting a Metrolink train would have been a good addition to his county.  "Look what they did to Florissant." (The train doesn't run to Florissant, but whatever.)

(If I have to spell it out "those people" were low-income, urban, African-Americans.  He didn't use the "n-word".  At least not to me.)

I really wondered, when he told me that, why Metro didn't fight harder to get that train up there?

Turns out Metro has no power on where the train goes.  Guys like my former boss do.

See this post about the East West Gateway Council of Governments for more on that.

At the Fare Increase "hearing" one of the Metro Executives that lives in St. Charles told me she had been "heartbroken" that the train was opposed.  "My neighbors fought it!" she exclaimed.  (I think I have already covered that Metro executives do not live in neighborhoods served by public transit, and if they do, rarely use it anyhow.)

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