DETROIT (Talk Radio 1270) The future of the city was the topic when Charlie Langton hosted a round table Friday on Talk Radio 1270 in the wake of Mayor Dave Bing telling CNN Detroit workers have a sense of “entitlement” and said his job is the second hardest in the country — behind only President Barack Obama’s.
In response, Detroit minister Malik Shabazz lobbed this verbal Molotov cocktail at Bing.
“Mayor Dave Bing does not represent Detroit and has never lived in Detroit, and doesn’t live in Detroit now,” Shabazz said. “Mayor Bing belongs to you all. He is a House You-Know-What.”
“House n-word” is a slang term used to denigrate black people by likening them to slaves in the house of a white person.
Shabazz was on the panel with “Deadline Detroit” writer Jeff Wattrick to discuss Detroit’s finances and whether there’s any way out of the cycle of debt and dysfunction. Shabazz said Bing’s leadership is entirely to blame for all the city’s woes.
“He (Bing) sounds just like the Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney talking about entitlements and obviously we know how the majority of the voting American public feels about this because they 100 percent rejected this viewpoint,” Shabazz said, adding. “I think that every American in the country that wants to work should be allowed, should be encourages and should be supported in working … with a living and a fair wage.”
He added: “I hear all the dire predictions about Detroit … I think the city of Detroit’s greatest days are ahead of us. Of course, we have enormous problems that are facing us, No. 1 is leadership or the lack thereof.”
Shabazz placed blame squarely on Bing for the poor quality of living in Detroit, where trash pick-up is sporadic, buses and 911 service are sometimes unreliable and firefighters are accepting public donations of toilet paper for the stations. “With all due respect to the honorable Dave Bing … who appears to be a very nice man, but he is incapable of leading this city,” Shabazz said.
Wattrick brought it back to the workers.
“The city workforce does not provide … quality services to the residents of Detroit for the taxes Detroiters pay,” Wattrick said. “We have poor bus service, the street lights don’t work, the cops don’t come when you call, there aren’t enough firemen, the city’s workforce needs radical restructuring.”
Shabazz said he was improperly blaming “the working class for all of Detroit’s problems.”
“That is the mayor’s fault,” the minister said.
What happens next for Detroit? One state senator is calling for the city’s dissolution, but Wattrick said bankrupcty is still a possibility.
“I think bankruptcy is definitely an option, it has to be on the table when you look at the structural deficit .. There’s a lot of money the city has to pay out and declining revenue streams,” Wattrick said.
Shabazz believes the state is “steamrolling” Detroit and protested the fact Gov. Rick Snyder is withholding scheduled payment to Detroit until the city pays law firm Miller Canfield, which drew the ire of City Council by helping to draft the consent agreement that puts a state board in charge of city finances.
Bing said the council’s rejection last week of a contract with law firm Miller Canfield means the city missed a deadline to draw down $10 million Detroit needs to stay afloat and endangers a $20 million release in December. Bing called it a huge setback for the financial recovery of Detroit, adding that unpaid furlough days are on the way for city workers if this isn’t worked out.
“How dare the governor and Andy Dillon the treasurer of the state of Michigan, white males … (say) ‘We’re going to withhold bond money,” Shabazz said. “The state of Michigan has been playing games with us.”