Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Is Bethlehem Dreaming of a White Christmas?

Before the decision to award a gambling license to Bethworks, there was no real gentrification in south side Bethlehem. Its rentals were similar to rates elsewhere in the Lehigh Valley. But the "imminent slots-and-lofts redevelopment" will certainly change that picture, along with the demographic make up of Bethlehem's south side. It's the new apartheid, bippy. Bethlehem, the Christmas City, will certainly morph into Bethlehem, the White Christmas City. Jersey transplants will be insulated from the Lehigh Valley's riff raff by tinseltowns like The Promenade Shops at Upper Saucon.

Bethlehem is delighted at the inevitable increased tax revenues. But forgotten are the poor, mostly Hispanic, who have little political or economic clout. I don't see any effort to expand affordable housing for those who will be displaced. They'll be nudged aside for latte-sipping yuppies, a process that occurs regularly in several U.S. cities.

So just as the original Bethlehem had no room for Jesus, neither does its Pennsylvania namesake.

4 comments:

Billy Givens said...

Bernie,

When I was in Navy boot camp in San Diego, California, taking target practice with a rifle, when a projectile completely missed not only the bull's eye but the entire target itself, the squad's chief petty officer, the equivalent of an army or marine corp. drill sergeant, he would should out, "Maggie's drawers."

That was the expression for missing the target.

Bethlehem City Councilwoman Magdalena "Maggie" Szabo, missed the target with her vote for Sheldon Adelson's and Michael Perrucci's Las Vegas Sands Casino and BethWorks sacrilege in the Christmas City's and County Nicholas Von Zinzendorf's Moravian community of Bethlehem.

So has council member Robert Donchez, who has a secret Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Perrucci, Northampton County DA John M. Morganelli, and PAAG Tom Corbett - and the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board of former Easton Mayor Tom Goldsmith and mid-night pay-raise Joe Conti - to protect Bethlehem's South Side neighborhood from Las Vegas- and Atlantic City-style corruption and crime and the kind of drunkenness that allegedly contributed to the vicious murder of Lehigh University sophomore Jeannie Clery in her dormitory room on the front steps of a sin palace cheating gullible gamblers - mostly seniors whose Huggies relieve not only their bladders and their bowels but unwanted interruption from their slot machines when nature calls.

Donches' and Maggie's fate will be decided in the May 15, 2007, Democratic primary.

SPIKE_ROGAN said...

Bernie,

Great "Promanead" refrence. My company hired me for our shop there. And we were literally THE FIRST shop to open there. I was on the opening crew.

I recently tranfered to our "Easton" shop in Lower Nazareth Township.

I couldn't take the rude elitest that came in and belittled and breated myself and my co-workers.

Not to mention how filthy and dumb these rich girls who hang there are.

I NEVER want to have a girl! Please please let them only ever be boys.

That tour there at Downtown Phoneyville really makes me NOT want to EVER have to deal with teenage girls.
OY!

Bernie O'Hare said...

Spike, Those girls are dumb? And rich? Over 70? Maybe the Promenade is not so bad after all.

r. mosh-kee said...

Today's 'lifestyle center' is yesterday's strip mall.
Read that somewhere about a week ago.

Let's thank our good friends the developers and all their allies for building one store for every six citizens all across the formerly "fruited plain."