Marty Walsh for Mayor

Previously, we endorsed Felix Arroyo for mayor. We felt he was the best candidate for mayor, but the voters of Boston did not choose him to continue beyond the preliminary election. After the preliminary election, it was relatively easy to make a decision as to who we would support in the general election. Marty Walsh's Dorchester roots and his working class upbringing helps him understand the problems that many Bostonians face. As a colleague said, "John Connolly thinks about poverty, where Marty Walsh feels about poverty." This level of empathy is hopefully a sign that if he becomes mayor, Marty Walsh will not forgot those who are most in need. Unlike the Boston Globe or other new outlets, we believe Marty Walsh's pro-labor union stance is a good thing. Labor unions are a powerful force in lifting up the income levels of those who often live below the poverty line (custodians, hotel workers, etc.) or are undervalued (teachers, nurses, construction workers, etc.). We believe he will continue Mayor Menino's legacy of focusing on the neighborhoods. Lastly, Marty Walsh has gained the support of the three leading candidates of color (including Felix Arroyo) from the preliminary election. We believe he is the best candidate to represent all of Boston.


Ratings Back to Dorchester Think Tank!

The Internet company that hosts our post ratings folded. After some searching, we have finally found an acceptable replacement. Sadly, we lost all of the ratings that blog readers left over the past 5 years. We encourage everyone to sift through the Dorchester Think Tank's blog posts and re-rate all of your favorite (or not so favorite) ideas.

#13 Expand Free and Consistent Wifi to Dorchester

Many cities nationwide, including Seattle, San Francisco, and Boston, have established free wifi for residents and visitors. In Boston, many parts of downtown, Dudley Square, and Grove Hall have free or low cost wifi. Even in these areas, the wifi can be spotty. Yet, there continues a clear and persistent digital divide between the rich and the poor in Boston. Mayor Menino's first step was commendable, but Boston must continue its expansion. There are many young and old residents that have limited access to the Internet. For many, using the Internet is restricted to the operating hours of local libraries or coffee shops. The city should start with its most populous neighborhood, Dorchester, and provide free wifi campaign through the entire neighborhood. It can be funded through partnerships with tech company sponsors, and, if that cannot provide the full funding, by having moderate and high income users pay a fee to help subsidize low income residents. This could encourage local business to consider relocating to the neighborhood and attract people to spend more time (studying or working) here.

Do you think this is a good idea? Rate below.

Felix Arroyo for Mayor

There are several candidates that Dorchester Think Tank believes will make great mayors of Boston. Marty Walsh's Dorchester roots and appreciation for labor is a plus. Charlotte Golar-Ritchie also lives in Dorchester and her strong government resume and intellect made her a contender (it would also be important to have a female mayor who looked like our majority-minority city). Although we are not from Hyde Park, Rob Consolvo has some great ideas on education improvement and other social justice issues. However, after serious deliberation (this is the first election in a long time that we actually feel several candidates are excellent), we have chosen to vote for Felix Arroyo.

Felix Arroyo is the most progressive candidate in the race for mayor. He grew up in the city, attended BPS, and comes from a family of Boston teachers and public servants. After attending several mayoral debates in person, we also believe he is the smartest person in that room. Unlike other candidates, he does not offer simple solutions or hollow promises. He doesn't believe in silver bullets. His background as a community organizer and his work with the SEIU is commendable. His age and energy is an asset. His campaign message focuses on decreasing the gap between rich and poor in Boston by focusing on lifting everyone. He has strong proposals related to middle income and lower income housing, job training, and school improvement. His environmental plan would divest in fossil fuels, make the city more energy efficient, and push the state to invest more in public transit. He will continue Mayor Menino's focus on the neighborhoods. It is an added bonus that he is Latino and speaks Spanish, since Latinos are the fastest growing demographic group in the city. For all these reasons, we are "Forward with Felix."


Boston Marathon Tragedy

Our hearts go out to all the victims of the Boston Marathon tragedy... The Governor and Mayor have announced the establishment of a fund to help the people most affected by the tragic events that occurred on April 15, 2013. For more information or to donate, click here: www.onefundboston.org

UPDATE: The Richard family of Dorchester was watching the Boston Marathon when bombs exploded nearby. Their young son Martin was killed. His younger sister and his mother remain seriously injured. Many people have asked how they can help the Richards. This campaign has been created to provide an avenue of assistance by friends at St Mark's Area Main Street and the Center for Civic Media: www.richardfamilyfund.org