Black Miamians Don't Trust That a $1.2 Billion Bond Will Benefit Schools

Categories: Luke's Gospel
Alex Izaguirre
Uncle Luke, the man who made the U.S. Supreme Court stand up for free speech, gets as nasty as he wants to be for Miami New Times. This week, Luke retraces the history of broken promises made to Miami's African American community.

On November 6, we'll vote on a $1.2 billion bond issue to fix up 280 schools that desperately need renovations. Some of these schools, like Miami Norland Senior High and Brownsville Middle School, which were built in the late 1950s, are one leaky roof or crumbling wall away from being condemned and declared health hazards. No child can learn under such toxic conditions.

But Miami-Dade Public Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho and Building For Tomorrow, the politcial action committee pushing the bond issue, are having a hard time convincing African-Americans that schools in low income neighborhoods like Allapattah, Brownsville, Overtown, and Liberty City will be first in line for the bond money.

We've heard the same song and dance time and again, ever since the federal government destroyed Overtown to pave the way for Interstate 95 in the late 1960s. It's been a long string of broken promises.

The construction of the Miami Arena in 1986 was supposed to spur redevelopment in Overtown. All it produced were two condo towers near the site of where the arena used to sit. Ten years ago, Miami-Dade County leaders promised hundreds of families who were kicked out of the Scott-Carver housing projects in Liberty City would be allowed to return home once the new homes were built. Instead, the county squandered the $35 million in federal funds for the reconstruction and nearly one-third of the 250 displaced families disappeared from the county's public housing system.

Since the 1980s, Miami's African-American voters twice supported measures to expand Metrorail to the county line along NW 27th Avenue. The first was a bond issue in 1985 and the second was the half-penny sales tax for mass transit in 2002. We're still waiting for that train to Sun Life Stadium. And, let's not forget the unfulfilled promise of jobs for the black community during the construction of the Marlins ball park.

The only ones who benefit are certain pastors and so-called political activists who are always around to get their palms greased during these campaigns. However, I trust Carvalho. He's a good man who I believe he will do the right thing for all schools on the renovation list. But he's on notice not to screw us over as others have in the past.

Luke on Twitter: @unclelukereal1.

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"Black Miamians" You can write that because you are black, but if I wrote it I am prejudice?


The bond is nonsense, and the project list is nothing more than page after page of all-purpose “cut and paste” summaries, with little if any details as to what will be done, particularly in the case of technology.They have had all the money they have ever needed, and they have never failed to misspend it, time and time again. The only ones fighting for this bond are the district employees outside of the classrooms that are afraid of losing their “civil service” jobs.Public schools are slowly becoming extinct, and all the parties involved that placed their own interest before those of the children have no one to blame but themselves.   


This district has mismanaged billions of dollars over many decades; what's more they will continue to do so as long as they can always hold the children hostage and ask for more ransom whenever they see their coffers running low. This “guilt game” they persistently perpetrate on the public is nothing more than a “long con”; therefore we should stop negotiating with these terrorists because their greed will never be slaked.


Stop the the issuance of a $1.2 billion General Obligation (GO) Bond.


 @e2 RE: "Public schools are slowly becoming extinct" Really? And what is taking the place of these soon-to-be-nonexistent public schools? Is it charter schools, which have often been proven to under-perform public schools? RE: "hold the children hostage" So, how do you suggest we "liberate" these captive children from the grasp of the public school system? Do you suggest we eliminate compulsory education? Do you have any alternatives on how to repair, refurbish, and modernize old school buildings that are falling apart other than, you know, by actually paying for it? RE: "They have had all the money they have ever needed" and "ask for more ransom whenever they see their coffers running low" Are you aware that the school board gets its revenue from property taxes? Are you aware of the drop in property values in the past several years? Do you realize how this has affected the school board's revenues? What surprises me most is not how ignorant your comments are, but the fact that New Times actually published them!

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