Cleveland shines during RNC week
Together We Rise.
Cleveland enjoyed much deserved positive recognition from the national media and delegates alike last week. The DCRA would like to thank Mayor Jackson and all the folks at Cleveland City Hall, especially Valerie McCall for all her diligent updates, members of City Council, Chief Williams and the Cleveland Police Department (as well as all the police officers from all the states that helped), the Secret Service, David Gilbert and Destination Cleveland, David Johnson and the Convention Center, Joe Marinucci and the Downtown Cleveland Alliance and its Ambassadors, Joe Calabrese and the GCRTA, the Cleveland 2016 Local Host Committee, and perhaps most of all, all the unnamed volunteers and citizens of Cleveland and northeast Ohio. We should all take a celebratory bow for all the hard work to make the event such a success. There were instances where it could have gone the other way, but we as Clevelanders would not let it stand and showed the world that patience, love, and a few hugs, go a long way in changing an outcome.
Despite the distractions of the voices of protesters, politicians, and pundits, whose purpose seemed to be to heighten fears due to recent tragic events, we stood united in the face of division. As Rev. Thomas Chulak, (visiting Cleveland by way of Ghent, N.Y.), was quoted in a column by David Maraniss of The Washington Post, "There was all this false talk about what lives matter, but the reality is that we are all now black and blue. We are all black and blue because we are all bruised."
Make no mistake: Four days of a Cleveland "block party" does not overcome years of mistrust. There is much work to be done in our community to heal past wounds. But as last week shows, we have comfort in knowing that we can have the dialogue using Cleveland's long held personality traits of stamina of effort, persistence of interest, and just plain dogged determination. This allows us to have the discussion without damaging and unproductive pronouncements from either side.
A wise man once told me that the best way to predict the future is to create it. Lets not waste this opportunity to capitalize on genuine good will to continue the dialogue that last week started.