Archive for the Other Media Category

McQuinn Flees Shockoe Stadium Questions, Literally

Posted in Articles, Other Media on September 18, 2013 by Kontra


Who knew that Delegate Delores McQuinn could move so fast?

At the latest meeting of the Slave Trail Commission, McQuinn (who chairs the commission) practically sprinted for the door moments before the public comment/question period.

I’d brought my video camera along to record audio, and when she started for the door, I pointed the camera in her general direction, but she was gone.  She moved so quickly that even after pursuing her out the door, I only found her assistant standing in the parking lot on a cell phone, calling to tell her all the things she’d forgotten in her hurry to escape.

Reporters from several news organizations, including The Virginia Defender, Style Weekly and WRIR, had shown up to question the commission about why it has expressed no position on the proposed baseball stadium in Shockoe Bottom.

It’s no secret that the mayor is about to officially announce his plan to build a stadium there.  The Richmond Times-Dispatch has already reported that his ideological partner in the project, H. Louis Salomonsky, recently purchased the final piece of property necessary to complete the construction.  We know these two have their minds made up.

Conspicuously silent on the matter has been the city’s taxpayer-funded Slave Trail Commission, which was created to “preserve the history of slavery in Richmond”.  The silence has caused some to question how the commission could be indifferent to whether a massive, city-changing structure (and its accompanying structures) would be dropped into the most historic slave-related area in the city.  Shockoe Bottom is not only the site of slave auctions, burial grounds and the slave trail itself, but an area that birthed an entire slave-trade-related economic infrastructure that was key to the development of Richmond as a city.

Style Weekly managed to get a quote from McQuinn later, but the resulting article is sure to put political pressure on the commission.

The Virginia Defender wrote a scathing piece about Salomonsky and the entire project.

By the end of the meeting McQuinn escaped from, the co-chair promised that we would be informed of whether the commission would have an official opinion on the ballpark at their next meeting, during the first week in October.

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Open Source RVA Interviews #OpposeTRAP

Posted in Other Media with tags , , , , , , on September 18, 2013 by Kontra

standagainstmadness

Yes, the legal battle over the fate of Virginia’s abortion clinics is ongoing.  In this radio broadcast, Richmond’s own Open Source RVA interviews Molly Vick, cofounder and director of Oppose TRAP about the latest developments in the struggle to retain reproductive rights in the state.

Joe Threat Tribute Show

Posted in Other Media on September 14, 2013 by Kontra

A tribute to Richmond rapper Joe Threat who recently passed away. Much love to the performers I missed.

The Nile
Richmond, VA
09/07/13

Nat Turner: A Symposium on Slavery in Southeastern Virginia

Posted in Other Media on September 14, 2013 by Kontra

Salomonsky: Richmond is a “Ghetto of people making $30k-$50k a year”

Posted in Other Media on June 24, 2013 by Kontra

Now here’s an interesting bit of audio.

Louis Salomonsky is the downtown developer who did time in federal prison for conspiracy to commit extortion, along with the Council member he bribed.  He recently laid out in full brazen form for Style how he was skirting taxes the straight-and-narrow way, but was smacked down by the city immediately thereafter.  He has been (and is currently) one of the loudest advocates for a new stadium in Shockoe Bottom, and controls a substantial portion of property in the area.

In a recent interview with Open Source on these tax abatement issues, Salomonsky also openly lamented the city’s “ghetto of people making $30k-50k a year”, citing it as the reason why the city keeps asking developers for more and more luxury condos.

Shortly thereafter, he notes with optimism that “minorities moving to the counties” because of a “declining school system” will finally bring rich, childless empty-nesters into the city, making it richer than the counties.

The fight against those counties for economic supremacy is still ongoing, he reminds us!

Wait, what?

Just to be clear… Citizens making $45k a year are ghettoizing the city?  And the declining educational system (even now closing schools) is a good thing, because the “minority” families that make up this city will be forced to leave to educate their children properly?  And we’re in an economic battle with the counties… why?

How is it possible that people like this say what they think and still get their way?

Pressure Builds For Cuccinelli to Break Silence On Legal Challenge As Hundreds Comment

Posted in Other Media on June 4, 2013 by Kontra

Medical professionals and activists on both sides of the abortion debate are waiting for Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli to officially comment, and ‘advise’ the Board of Health, on a legal petition for regulatory action which would require all hospitals to make the same architectural changes being forced on abortion providers.  The legal challenge already has 200 comments from citizens and health professionals.  The Attorney General’s official opinion on the matter, contained in the Board of Health’s June 2012 meeting notes, mysteriously turned up missing last month when activists from OpposeTRAP tried to obtain them via a Freedom of Information Act request.

The lost notes contain the full transcript of the Senior Assistant Attorney General, Allyson Tysinger, advising the Board that the hospital licensure regulations would have to be amended because of inconsistencies with code section 32.12-127.001.*  These notes were requested because the brief abstract of their content indicates that Cuccinelli’s office directly supports the position of the legal petitions: The Board of Health didn’t have the authority to exempt existing hospitals from Guidelines for new construction.  With this position, Cuccinelli stands to find strong opposition among all categories of health care providers, which would be a major hit during an election cycle, as the ruling would necessitate almost every hospital (of all types) in the Commonwealth to make extremely costly architectural upgrades or close their doors.  Cuccinelli’s opinion has already initiated a process which is expected to result in the closing of most abortion clinics in Virginia.

 

The petition itself is missing from the published agenda for the Board’s annual meeting scheduled for this Thursday, June 6th, 2013.  The meeting, held at the Perimeter Center in Henrico, VA, will be the last annual meeting for board member James Edmondson, a long-time advocate for rational regulations, who has acted as a voice of reason throughout the two-year debate.  OpposeTRAP learned that Mr. Edmondson has requested a special meeting to address the petition specifically, as allowed in Article II, Section 4, of the Board of Health bylaws.  Upon contact, Mr. Edmondson expressed regret that the appropriately apolitical Board of Health has been forced to make judgments between obviously political and obviously public health issues over the last two years, to the detriment of the women of the Commonwealth.

Molly Taylor Vick, an organizer with OpposeTRAP, does not believe that the Attorney General can be consistent and stand by his decision without turning to nonsensical arguments.  Vick, who submitted the Freedom of Information request, was especially interested in the missing notes for more details of Ms. Tysinger’s explanation that all abortion facilities should be considered new facilities because they had not been previously regulated or licensed.   “Of course Cuccinelli can’t afford to shut down hospitals and health care centers – either financially or politically.  He will have to continue with this ridiculous claim that abortion clinics are ‘new’ just because he just started calling them hospitals.  It’s an absurd argument, and one that runs counter to all precedence I’ve identified.”  Oppose TRAP released the following comic this week, which is going viral among abortion rights advocates across the state:

[ Click the comic to zoom in, and to share on Facebook, go here! ]

Cooch Comix #1

Content from a 06/04 Oppose TRAP Press Release.

Contact: Molly Taylor Vick

Phone: (804) 514-0227

Email: opposetrap@gmail.com

How Virginia is Shutting Down Women’s Clinics

Posted in Other Media with tags , , , , , on September 23, 2012 by Kontra

A vignette of what happened inside and outside the September 14th Virginia Board of Health meeting as they were directed by Ken Cuccinelli to rule that new, unnecessary regulations could be used to shut down existing abortion facilities.