Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Proud to be in Pittsburgh

Steelers going to the Super Bowl and Obama inaugurated. What a week.

Looking forward to seeing democracy in action unfold over the next year in Pittsburgh, too.

To those who doubt, realize that if a truly good candidate comes along, Pittsburgh will see it. Remember that the "ignorant" and "racist" city of Pittsburgh helped bring Obama to this moment. Not the suburbs. Not Butler county. Not Beaver County.

Today, I'm proud to be in Pittsburgh.

UPDATE: I won't be there tonight, but I wish I could be. I hope everyone celebrates responsibly.


Schultz said...

Remember that the "ignorant" and "racist" city of Pittsburgh helped bring Obama to this moment. Not the suburbs.

You are so wrong on two things. First, all of Southwestern PA was deemed to be "racist" and "rednecked." If you did any campaigning for Obama in places as close as Dormont or in many Washington and Westmoreland county localities it would be clear that this assertion is factual.

Second thing - the Pittsburgh suburbs are what "helped bring Obama to this moment". The city always vote for Obama was a given as it always for the Democratic candidate in a big way, even in 1984 when Mondale was crushed by Reagan pretty much everywhere but Minnesota and Pittsburgh. The big question mark during the election here in PA was how well Obama would do in the Philly and Pittsburgh suburbs. Obama won big in both. In Allegheny County he did well, with the city accounting for 117,331 of the 368,453 votes Obama received here (just under 32%).

Okay, here is another topic that is much bigger than this post. One of the things I read into this post and those on other blogs by city residents was this city vs. suburb bullshit that exists in both the online and offline worlds. We need to start thinking regionally rather than this small minded city dweller vs. suburban dweller nonsense because we are really competing for resources and jobs with other regions, not just cities. Having lived on both sides of the fence I could point out the good, the bad, and the ugly in both the city and the burbs, but I also realize, unlike most it seems, that they need each other. Suburbanites always blame the city government for being pitiful, while city residents blame the suburbanites for leaving town and getting a free ride when the use the city services. Last point, for now: if it weren't for the burbs, Obama would not only not be President but Pittsburgh" the city would not have been named "most livable" city, because that survey included the Pittsburgh metro region. Pittsburgh is a city but it is also a region. Maybe this is a future post on here or Pittsblog.

illyrias said...

Actually, I was quoting you. And no, I do not think it is "factual." I think it's a generally accurate stereotype.

Anyways, I do agree with you that there is a very poor mixing of statistics between city and county and greater region. People use whichever statistics they choose to prove their point. I assumed you were referring to the city of Pittsburgh when you said you found them to be ignorant and racist.
Similarly, I assume this article is referring to the cities: http://encarta.msn.com/encnet/departments/elearning/?article=educatedcities

But you make a good point. I fell into the trap of suburban-city divide. I like to think I only do it when I'm provoked by outside forces, but I'm sure that goes both ways.

You are definitely correct in asserting that the suburbs can't exist without the city AND vice-versa. But just because I realize that doesn't mean I like the suburbs. I'm a city person at heart and always will be. I understand that other people like the suburbs, but I do not.

And while you're twisting statistics, let's say that without the city, Obama would have lost the county leaving just 38% of the votes for him. Most red states had a higher percentage than that.
The city has about 23% of the population of the county and yet provided 32% of the votes for Obama.

Schultz said...

I like the city too, that is why I moved to an inner ring suburb that has a central business district, is walkable, has access to the T, and isn't full of McMansions like the sprawling burbs of Peters or Cranberry. All suburbs are not created equal.

How was I twisting statistics by providing the actual results? That is not twisting. My point was that the Obama vote in the city was a given. There was no doubt he would win the city by a wide margin because even when the Democrats run a weak candidate the city comes through for him and will even go against the national trend(Mondale in '84). Ditto for Philadelphia. The outcome of the PA presidential election comes down to the Philly and Pittsburgh suburbs, with the Philly burbs in the four surrounding counties being the key due to their size.