Monday, March 28, 2016

Whacky 2018 Election News

Although the 2015 Fort Lauderdale general election resulted in a landslide for incumbent City Commissioners, 2018 sees most seats, including the Mayor's, open for the first time in years. Amazingly, Fort Lauderdale's political establishment has already started the election countdown. On Sunday, at 3 pm, the first Meet the Candidates event of the 2018 election takes place. 

Current Commissioner (and former FLPD police chief) Bruce Roberts, ex commissioner Charlotte Rodstrom, and occasional past Mayoral candidate Jim Lewis have already announced their runs to replace Mayor Seiler. During their tenure, Roberts and Rodstrom voted in lockstep with the City on anti-homeless laws, although Rodstrom left long before the 2014 laws were introduced. District 4, Romney Roger's district, also has a blue-blooded member of the political establishment announcing an early candidacy in Walter Duke, formerly a commissioner for Dania Beach. Clearly the political establishment is working way ahead of time to make sure the status quo remains unshaken in the years ahead. So far, one other outsider has announced their candidacy as well. Hunter Altschul, a young college student, is running against Duke for District 4. All these candidates along with (as advertised) Mayor Jack Seiler and Commissioner Dean Trantalis will be at the Annie Beck House, 1329 N. Dixie Highway, this Sunday, April 3rd, at 3 pm.

We look forward to seeing how the political future of Fort Lauderdale will effect homelessness in downtown.

Fear & Loathing in Fort Lauderdale

Not to go unmentioned, the Sun Sentinel wrote a pretty extensive story recently on the ongoings of Stranahan Park.  Focusing entirely on quotes given by Mayor Seiler and the President of the Fort Lauderdale Women's Club, the result is an insulting hit piece on the people who are stuck living in the area around Stranahan Park, who are continuously re-victimized as undesirable "problems" by their wealthy commercial neighbors.

While the story stretches to claim some bent fences and dead fish as news, it entirely omits the newsworthy fact that the area for homeless people to occupy around Stranahan Park has rapidly dwindled in the past year. More and more people and their possessions are packed on 1st next to the park, and it is indeed curious for a news story like this to come out that so thoroughly repackages the narrative of this ongoing crisis.

As we have been reminding people for awhile now, privileged individuals have been complaining and divising schemes to displace undesirable people from Stranahan Park for perhaps 50 years or more. Not much has changed.


  1. Its about time Florida worked on and then pass the Homeless Bill of Rights. We did it in Rhode Island and it can be done in Florida. I will be more than happy to explain how it got passed there

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