Posted by coaldigger 3 years, 6 months ago to Culture
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I lived and worked in this great city for more than two decades. Instead of the smoky, sooty steel cauldron that Meeken called "Hell with the lid off", it is a clean, modern city of technology, culture and education. One thing that was blatantly obvious in Pittsburgh is that it was a city of immigrants. There were many neighborhoods made up of different ethnic backgrounds, with their churches, restaurants, bocce courts, etc. where you would feel like you were in a different country. Yet, there was a great sense of citizenship and pride in "The Berg" that brought people together.

The University of Pittsburgh, in Oakland where I went to graduate school, is located next to the Hill District which was predominately a black neighborhood. Oakland also has Carnegie Melon University and the Carnegie Museum. No one feared walking the streets at night and there was much less crime than in the downtown area of most cities. Next to Oakland was Squirrel Hill, a predominately Jewish neighborhood but that didn't seem any different from Polish Hill or an Italian or Hungarian neighborhood in other parts of the city. Indeed, just like Mr. Rogers, everyone had a neighborhood.

I worked for a company founded by a German around 1900 that until WW II had a sister company in Essen yet, there were Jewish managers, scientists, lawyers and engineers. The only way one would know they were Jewish would be by their observation of some custom on some religious holiday. No more was thought about these things than ashes on the forehead of Catholics that attended church before coming to work on Ash Wednesday. Our Chairman was a pioneer is the JOBS program which tried to find jobs and training for blacks in the early 70's as a way of solving some of the problems of society. He had me take a day out of every week and call on businesses seeking their pledge to hire workers. I talked to many small business owners and unlike us corporate types, they were very outspoken regarding their bias against poor, uneducated, untrained, unemployed people of any color but in particular, blacks. Yet, when pressed, many agreed to give it a try and there were some remarkable successes. They did it because they identified with people that needed an opportunity as they or their ancestors once did when immigrating to America.

The people of Pittsburgh openly celebrated their different backgrounds, yet were amazingly willing to come together as a city. A Steeler, Penguin or Pirate game is all you need to see proof of this allegiance. It is disgusting that a crackpot would harbor such hatred and for him to kill people that would never do him any harm. Crazy people exist everywhere, always have, and our own vigilance is our best protection. It won't go away by setting groups against one another or blaming Trump or the media. This weaponization of tragedy for political advantage is as dangerous as a nut with a Glock.

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  • Posted by $ Olduglycarl 3 years, 6 months ago
    Nicely stated and enjoyed reading the background of that area.
    The most difficult thing for a conscious being to grasp is the fact that there are some that are not conscious beings...never mind the things they do.
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  • Posted by CircuitGuy 3 years, 6 months ago
    "Crazy people exist everywhere, always have, and our own vigilance is our best protection. "
    Yes. When it comes to one-in-ten-million criminally insane people, there are more of them because there are more people on earth. There also more people with ingenious inventions.

    All those people you describe from different backgrounds building businesses by honest trades have way more impact than criminals.
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