With its low self-esteem and high urban blight, Hartford is the ultimate underdog city. Sad City Hartford documents the joys, sorrows and eccentricities of New England's Rising Star.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Anti-Violence Rally on Mather Street

Yesterday, we went to (and video recorded) the anti-violence rally on Mather Street. The event was organized by Mothers United Against Violence and hosted by the sweaty Rev. Henry Brown. The event also featured several other speakers including Pastor J. Stan “That Guy I Always See Talking Really Close to the Camera on Public Access TV” McCauley.

While the event was sparsely attended (at one point there were more reporters than citizens), it was a step in the right direction.

Ordinarily when a cop gets shot in the line of duty, it’s viewed as a sign off pervasive lawlessness within the community. Ever since Saturday night’s shooting there has been very little said about it within the community.

A few observations:
  • As the rally took place, watching the passersby was fascinating. People mostly looked at the event as either foreign invasion or something to laugh at. Only about one in ten stopped to join the group. We wish we had a second camera going to capture that.
  • The rally had a significant police presence and the organizers did a very good job in making them a part of the discussion and highlighting the fact that they are part of the community.
  • While we applaud Rev. Brown and company for putting the event together, can they lay off the religion just a little bit? Just a little? Please? We really don’t think that praying is a solution onto itself. (We’ll save the atheist rant for a more appropriate time and place.)
  • Can someone get the guy who is running for NAACP president Red Bull? He has about as much energy and charisma as a roll of wet toilet paper.
  • Again, while it may not be perfect, at least they are doing something.
Here are video clips from the event yesterday.


  1. There are conversations going on. Their in the barbersops, beauty parlors, front porches, the pulpits in the storefront churches and other places that you and I are not privy to. These residents don't have visibility or any kind of profile so it's always annoying when people ask "Why doesn't the community condemn this?' Because they don't do it in the venues we are used to and using the same methods doesn't mean it isn't happening.

    This is a nice blog that I just discovered via Helen Ubinas' column in the Courant. I'll be visiting again.

  2. Prayer isn't going to stop the violence in Hartford. People need good meaningful jobs to provide stable lives for their children and to shield them from the forces that make crime and defiance arise. Families need to be able to function as effective an effective economic and personal support system. Youth need to have available, within walking distance, to productive and interesting activities. The generations must reintegrate so the young can learn from the old. This is achieved by political action to take control of government and its ability to leverage businesses to locate in neighborhoods where jobs are needed. Praying only slows this down.