Clayton’s Corner: Weighing In On the LES Dwellers Controversy

Posted on: October 9th, 2013 at 10:30 am by

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LES Dwellers Founder Diem Boyd


The LES Dwellers got suspended from participating in the political dialogue and using their so-called government protected democratic rights at Community Board 3 meetings. First, I must say, for me, at initial glace their being censored is funny. Now, finally, they will understand some of the earlier problems our small group encountered trying to deal with this new Entertainment Zone that had been forced down our throats. Problems like being banned from the 7th Precinct Council meetings. All of a sudden they now know exactly what I was talking about and what we went though. All of a sudden they realize that there are hidden agendas and what is, is not always as it appears to be. And that this is not what Democracy looks like.

So now that we are all on the same page, the Dwellers are right. There is absolutely no way they should be suspended from participating in the supposedly government-protected democratic process.

There should be a serious investigation into the whole bar history. Answer questions like who started the Entertainment Zone. Whose idea was it? Who backed it? Who profited from it? Why were all the rules and regulations broken to allow all these bars to take over and to destroy the backbone of the mom-and-pop neighborhood businesses?

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One of the earlier LES Dwellers’ street campaigns, October 2012

Someone should contact Rebecca Moore and ask her about how badly she was treated when she tried to stop the bars and the hotel on Ludlow to Orchard from going up. She was telling local politicians and people on the community board that some of the cement being used for the new hotel was inferior. What was the CB3 response? She was crazy. Turns out she was right and in the end the new hotel owner had to tear off a couple of stories before they could start going up again. Why would the local politicians and community board support the invaders who were clearly breaking the law?

The overabundance of new bars has always been a source of trouble, so why would the local politicians and community board people support them? The bars have been as much of a problem as the drugs, so why support them to the point where they could disregard all of the local laws, rules, and regulations? No question that all the new bars have been like a plague on the community.

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David McWater moments before an outburst that cost his position on CB3, Sep. 2013

A plague to such a degree that we were banned from attending the precinct council’s meetings for asking questions about the crime related to bars; and the LES Dwellers have now been suspended from attending Community Board 3 meetings as a group. Something is totally wrong with all of this. This is not what Democracy looks like.

My confusion is how they, LES Dwellers, lost these rights— to quote:

Moreover, they infringed upon the rights of every resident who has taken an action alongside us – from signing petitions, to writing letters, to making posters, to attending meetings, to writing to our elected officials, to printing presentations, to proof-reading, to research and writing content, to submitting photos and videos etc.

And – “We are outraged. We do accept this suspension.” Why would they accept this suspension?

As a sidebar—I had pushed, in The Villager, for the LES Dwellers to meet with new liquor license application people, and they, the Dwellers, refused. Now I see they have changed their position. And, from my perspective, they have every right to meet the new prospective business owners. The members of this block association are their neighbors, not those on the community board.

Who wants another noisy bar polluting the community? The LES Dwellers should have the right to investigate and see if the new business would further destroy their quality of life.

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