Thursday, June 21, 2007

Shame on you Boston Herald

Without becoming too political or interjecting any class or race double-standards that underlie the reactions about the terrible story of the stabbing at The 6 House here in Southie a few days ago, I really needed to say shame on you to the Boston Herald for their biased coverage of the news. The past is the past. Southie is a neighborhood of progress, moving forward. Why dredge up old skeletons? I'm part of the new residents of Southie, and my perception of this area is rightfully optimistic and filled with all the good that Southie has. I'm not living in the past, nor did i live here in the past. Time to move on.

I wasn't at the bar. In fact, I rarely frequent it, though I was there a couple times right after they rebranded and reopened. I drive past it all the time, and wouldn't think twice about going there, even now.

It's events like this that remind everyone that, unfortunately, Southie continues to possess elements of its less gentrified past. It's still the city, parts of it can be rough at times, people need to be aware and smart.

Southie residents - new and old - want a safe living environment. Nobody condones this, nor do we want drugs or violence in our community. It's unfortunate that both continue to operate.

But would closing The 6 House solve the problem? Probably not. Better security might. Better policing might (after all, there is a precinct right across the street). How about a neighborhood watch project? The 6 House should take responsibility for the safety of its patrons, so perhaps fault lies in poor judgement on their part in this area.

But the 6 House is not a dive. Add it to Shenanigan's, Amrhein's, Boston Beer Garden, and The Playwright, and there's 5 similar bar/grill type restaurants along Broadway - all recently redone, all cleaner, brighter, and more welcoming. All but the Beer Garden redone since I moved to Southie in 2003. All steps in the right direction for Southie.

Parts of Southie are also some of the city's most beautiful and charming. The Seaport area is booming. The beachfront along Dorchester Bay and out to Castle Island is my favorite place to spend a sunny day in the city. The Broadway T stop area has tons of new lofts entering the market. West 2nd St. has many new condo projects. The area is attracting the next generation of owners.

Closing The 6 House will chase "the bad element patrons" to yet another Southie bar. Let's solve the problem, not create more. Let's work on the crime and the criminals. Renovated condos and places like The 6 house are part of the solution - moving the neighborhood forward. If nothing changes, nothing changes.

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