Letters from Neighbors

I’ve received a few messages from the message box on the homepage, and I always write back. Sometimes I turn the responses to content on my Platform page, but here is where the personal details are changed and I present my responses, since others may have the same questions.

Hello, my name is Jim and I am a resident of Ward 7, but on this side of the river, Wards 7 and 8 have the same issues that is why we call ourselves Ward 15. It is great that you have become fond of Ward 8 and want to see change for the better but some advice for you, wait until you spend more time in the Ward and really get engaged with the people and the issues- and republicans don’t get votes from Ward 15.

If you want to help it may be better to get involved with community organizations and reach out to Trayon White and work with him and learn and understand our obstacles. Being white may be helpful to bring attention to Ward 8 but you would have to really gain the trust of the natives of DC being a transplant to the area. Change some times is made better through grassroots efforts as opposed to in politics.


Thanks for the email and the advice.

I wonder how much time is required to fully understand the issues for Ward 15 (new term for me, I kinda like it). There are people who work full time in the schools, non-profits, DCRA, and other organizations who intimately know the obstacles that folks EOTR face. My day job unfortunately takes me out of the District and so my knowledge of the issues mainly originates from conversations with neighbors, interactions with voters, and my own research (a lot of it is published on my website). Through the hundreds of conversations over the past few years, I believe that I’ve achieved a decent grasp on the issues by understanding others’ point-of-view.

On grassroots and community organizations, I believe that individuals building relationships with others is the most effective means to understand and solve problems. A friend nearby is usually more caring and responsive than a government employee. The book Vital Friends from Gallup talks about how the homeless have few people who have expectations for them, demonstrating the importance of multiple strong relationships in one’s life. I plan on continuing my personal and financial support to non-profits and ministries in my neighborhood, but also intend on cultivating relationships with the kids on the court (if the rims stay up).

On my political race, my understanding of the people and organizations in the Ward has accelerated due to my participation in this Council race. After the election, my knowledge will be greater that it may have been otherwise and my Democratic opponents will have entertained some healthy ideological competition. Win/win!

On my being white as a possible means of bringing attention to the area, it does makes me easier to be physically seen, but I believe the privilege ends there. Divine intervention, wisdom, effort, and leadership will hopefully be credited as families come together, crime decreases, and different types of wealth increase in this area. There is no real power in anyone’s pigment.

Your friendly candidate in the next ward,


Dear Nate,
I am a teenager who has been in in Ward 8 for all my life. I’ve been interested in politics for a while now. Looking at your campaign website I am very pleased with what you plan to do for the community and legislation you plan to propose.

I am not a big fan of the current council member for ward 8. He has really not done anything helpful for this community. There are too many issues going on in DC like housing, slumlords, lack of employment, and much more. There are abandoned buildings and plots too that are sitting here too when it can be used for housing.

Ward 8 is violent and nothing is being done to combat it or bring good change to the community. There are kids my age or younger running the streets with no one to help get them off of them and doing better things with their lives. They’re being led on a bad path and it is increasing the violence for many more years to come around here.

The current council member doesn’t care, he helps fundraise things like cookouts, that doesn’t get people out of poverty. He favors those in a close circle and gives them all types of things while the community suffers. Although I do not favor any party, I consider myself independent.

However, if I was able to vote I’d vote for you. You have mentioned a lot of issues I’ve been going on about for a very long time. Three main ways I choose a good candidate is by a persons’ character, policies, and consequences of those policies. I have seen you to really fit those in my opinion as a reasonable candidate. We need someone who will do things for this community instead of talking about what they’re gonna do and not do anything.

I believe you are the best choice for Ward 8 right now. It shocked me to see you were running here, especially seeing that DC is a democratic city. I hope you win. The community needs better, not empty promises like Trayon does.


Thanks for the note, sorry for the delayed response. My wedding was last week and I just got back into town.

It’s good to understand civics, even if you can’t vote yet. You’ll gain knowledge on governance, organizations, history, sociology, psychology, philosophy, and other useful areas when you comprehensively consider different issues. And if you actively participate in the political process later, you’ll have more personal experience to draw upon since you’ve paid attention in your youth.

I’d be interested to hear about any ideas that you have that address the problems that you see. Some ideas don’t need legislation for implementation, but some problems (like generational poverty) are connected to federal and local programs (Section 8 and other entitlements), which require regulatory corrections.  

You’ve got me pondering qualifications for a good candidate. Recently I prioritized policy, then character, but now I’m reconsidering the importance of character. I guess it would depend on the race. I think another element of complexity is how third party candidates can influence the winner (research Perot from 1992). That can complicate an ideologically motivated voter. Principles vs. pragmatism.

On Trayon, he has brought back some goods for the community. I would agree that he’s also brought back goods for his campaign friends with our tax dollars. Check out his Fair elections reporting to see that. Overall, I’m not impressed by his volume of co-sponsorships and I’m disappointed by his legislation that doesn’t alleviate residents from dangerous criminals, keeps the district economically repressed, and doesn’t support wealth-building or job creation (as I discuss on my website).

Thanks again for the message. Stay in school. Don’t talk to strange toys. You should follow me on social media and show up at an upcoming event.


Why should I vote for you? Why should I trust you have my community in your best interest and why should I trust you will not turn my community all WHITE? WHITE does not mean BETTER, POSITIVE, or GREAT. What can you do for Seniors, Single Parents, Better Affordable Housing, JOBS, JOBS, JOBS, YOUTH PROGRAMS, Re turn-CITIZENS( Housing- VERY IMPORTANT) MENTAL HEALTH? You have been a ward 8 for five years. WARD 8 DOESN’T want or need to be the next GEORGETOWN!!!!! Ward 8 Needs someone who sees the community has HUMAN BEINGS not PROFIT, someone to empower the entire community GOOD and BAD! If you are this person SHOW UP and SHOW OUT! if not then don’t waste our time. One more thing, if you win, are you willing to hire ward 8 people to work in our office?????????????

Thanks for the message, Anita. Allow me to address your questions below.

Why should I vote for you?

If you’re pleased with the District’s laws and services and Trayon’s performance, you should probably not vote for me. If you want to have a representative who has new ideas and a different paradigm (like fighting for Ward 8’s interests first and opposing legislation that retards economic growth and protects violent criminals), then you might want to vote for me.

Why should I trust you have my community in your best interest…

It’s really our community, even though you’ve certainly lived in the neighborhood longer than me. Gertrude Lomax died five years ago, and I bought her empty condo unit at Washington Place. I wanted to move there since it was a place I could afford and I liked the location. Since then, I’ve built relationships with my neighbors, who have truly enriched my life (RIP Ricardo Rory). As a general principle, I believe people should be good stewards of their home, and continually make improvements in their environment, since they have the most control and easiest access to the place where they are.

…and why should I trust you will not turn my community all WHITE? WHITE does not mean BETTER, POSITIVE, or GREAT

I have no interest in changing the wonderful culture that exists in this part of DC. The generations of families who live next to and love each other, the Go-Go, the picnics, the high school sports, the Redskins Football Team, and many other things are things to savor. I am interested in decreasing the number of kids who shoot each other and increasing the high school graduation rate, which are not issues that are unique to a certain ethnicity.

Young professionals who would like to buy a home and invest in a community will continue to move into the affordable areas. They will be ethnically diverse and they will be good for the neighborhoods; starting families and bringing in more access to resources with their diverse skill sets and occupations. For some areas, this is redemptive and should be celebrated. I’m not afraid of more diversity, and I don’t consciously associate ethnicities with certain values, but make efforts to judge individuals by their character. I find that understanding one’s character, talent, and personality (Myers Briggs) to be immensely more helpful in knowing and valuing someone than any demographic label.

What can you do for Seniors, Single Parents, Better Affordable Housing, JOBS, JOBS, JOBS, YOUTH PROGRAMS, Return-CITIZENS( Housing- VERY IMPORTANT) MENTAL HEALTH?

As a representative on the DC Council, I can present legislation that gives people greater opportunity by restricting oppressive governmental programs. For example, the district has a complex ‘trust fund’ for developing new housing units, which increases the costs and regulations and has results like the current Barry Farm project. In the words of current Councilmember Alyssa Silverman, when talking about displacement from homes, “It wasn’t the invisible hand…we (the elected officials) kicked them out.”

I’m in favor of cutting unnecessary licensure programs like the 1000 hours of training required for barbering. More job creation generally helps everyone-in whatever stage of life they currently reside- the means to create more income to better provide for themselves and their families.

I’m interested in reviewing the current programs for returning citizens and comparing them to other cities in order to find best practices to reduce recidivism and to increase work opportunities.

The Council and Mayor’s office discouraged the mental wellness of DC residents by shutting down playgrounds and telling people to stay home, when the outdoors was safer from the virus and for the psyche. They thought taking away freedom of movement to protect the residents from a virus with a 99.9% recovery rate was more important than letting people get outside, feel the sun, and enjoy nature.

Keeping the neighborhoods safe is imperative for Seniors, making the hundreds of free recreational events accessible. I’m also going to sponsor legislation to have the first $20,000 of pension income to be tax-free from the city.

You have been a ward 8 for five years. WARD 8 DOESN’T want or need to be the next GEORGETOWN!!!!!

I appreciate Georgetown’s unique history – it had a period of growth since it was the last established port on the Potomac before Great Falls. Today it is known for the University and the specialty shops on M St. Personally, the goods in that neighborhood are too pricy for me, and I get upset when the professors testify to the Council and claim to have SE’s interests at heart when they don’t (see my page on cashless companies).  

 Ward 8 Needs someone who sees the community has HUMAN BEINGS not PROFIT, someone to empower the entire community GOOD and BAD!

I’m with you. This reminds me of the slumlords who see human beings as economic tools, and who don’t have habitable conditions and threaten eviction when the vulnerable tenants request assistance. That’s why I care about having a regulatory environment where there are more job opportunities, so people can earn more income and have more choices on where to live, and they can stay out of an unjust housing system.

 If you are this person SHOW UP and SHOW OUT! if not then don’t waste our time.

I’ll show up-at the council meetings in NW and at the community gatherings in SE. I’m not sure what ‘showing out’ is, but I’m a guy who’s focused on results and ensuring the Ward’s interests are advocated.

One more thing, if you win, are you willing to hire ward 8 people to work in our office?????????????

Always. I need people in the office who can get results legislatively and provide excellent constituent services, and I’ll prioritize those who live in Ward 8. With a staff of 8 people, I can’t imagine not having representation.