Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Mayor Street hears the one about the pot and the kettle

Just a few weeks after Mayor Street sharply criticized the National Park Service for their amazingly ill-advised plans to permanently fence off Independence Hall, saying “the fence will give visitors a sense that they are ‘entering an armed camp,’” the Street administration is reevaluating their own plans for tightening security at City Hall.
Nearly five years after the September 11th terrorist attacks, the Street administration is still grappling with the extent of security needed for City Hall. And a plan calling for daily restricted access is now being re-thought.
Now, even though the turnstiles have been installed, that plan for round-the-clock restricted access is being re-evaluated, according to city managing director Pedro Ramos[.]
We’re glad to hear it, because, if Mayor Street is going to be at all effective fighting the NPS and their reactionary vision for INHP security, he’s going to have to have credibility in his corner.

And nothing screams credible like turning City Hall into a fortress and then crying foul when Independence Hall tries to do the same thing.
“We’re opposed to the fence and believe Independence Park should be as open to the people as reasonably possible,” Mr. Street said by e-mail. [NYTimes]

In a highly critical preliminary response to the plan, city Managing Director Pedro Ramos said: "The city has serious concerns that the current and proposed screening facilities and process... and the proposed fencing... present a significant interference with the historic nature of the property and with the free movement and public access to the entire site." [Inky]
Exactly. Now practice what you preach, boys.

Street: Shit, Pedro, you’re right. Time to backpedal. Stat. [KYW1060]
Security concerns are sucking the soul out of urban life [Salon]
Tell the NPS what they can do with their fence [PhillySkyline]

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