Believe it or not, I haven't always been the statesman I am today. Years ago, this post would have probably been titled The Hypocrisy of a Poverty Pimp. Anyway, putting aside my growing diplomacy, Rite Aid had a surprising ally at the zoning hearing Monday evening. According to The Morning Call's Devon Lash, Alan Jennings, executive director of The community Action Committee of the Lehigh Valley, spoke on behalf of Rite Aid's plan; "... (it) will transform a blighted building...bringing jobs downtown, especially with the clock ticking down to demolition for the arena.. There's too much at stake downtown."
Bear in mind this is the same Alan Jennings who turns people into small business owners. He doesn't teach them to fish, he buys them a fish market. He brags that those gifted by his start up business division have a 97% success rate. He even has a division office at 7th and Liberty. Although Jenning's supported Rite Aid (and the Arena) moving forward, this supposed advocate for small business was nowhere to be seen when the former Hamilton Street merchants pleaded to City Council. Where was Alan? Alan was placing his bets. He knows from where the butter on his bread cometh. It doesn't come from the small displaced merchants of Hamilton Street, but from grants distributed by Pawlowski and gifts from large corporations which back his vision for Allentown. So while 34 merchants, who never received a grant or startup from the likes of Jennings, were displaced, their and our tax dollars will be dispensed by Jennings, to make startup Successes, from those who don't have the gumption to do it on their own. How's my diplomacy coming?