South Phoenix, The New American City
We are all extremely lucky and blessed to have so many wonderful and caring people in our community. I am tremendously grateful and constantly amazed at every one in our community who I see or hear give so much of themselves to try and make South Phoenix a better, stronger, and more complete community. I often think about all of the fabulous things we have been able to accomplish and achieve over the past 20 years. The one thing I am most certain about is that we absolutely could not have done it alone.
South Phoenix arguably has the greatest potential in the country to become a model for the New American City.Lets face it the days of living in excess are gone. Government, corporations, small business, individuals and non-profits have had to re-adjust, cut and scrounge just to survive. Hopefully we have all learned our lesson and now understand that an economy needs to be diverse and ethical in order to operate sustainably and must be people-centered not driven by greed and self-serving organizations.
The New American Cities principle concern must be to actually improve the living conditions of all the people in their community. When I served in the U.S. Army my Sergeant Major would always tell us that we were only as strong as our weakest soldier. He strived to meet the needs of every person and it had significant and beneficial repercussions at the level of production. Our new economy needs the same ethic in order to function correctly not just any ethics but an ethic that is people-centered.
When we consider the hot topics of rebuilding America by creating jobs we need to acknowledge the issues involved in the relationship between ethics and business, as well as the evolution currently taking place in methods of production. It appears that the traditionally valid distinction between profit-based companies and non-profit organizations can no longer do full justice to our current reality or offer practical direction for the future.
In recent decades a broad intermediate area or third sector has emerged between the two types of enterprises. The so-called civil economy is made up of traditional companies which nonetheless subscribe to social aid agreements in support of underdeveloped countries, charitable foundations associated with individual companies, or groups of companies oriented towards the social well being of a community.
This is a matter not merely of creating a third sector, but of a broad new blended reality embracing the private and public spheres, one which does not exclude profit but instead considers it a means for achieving human and social ends. The strengthening of different types of businesses, especially those capable of viewing profit as a means for achieving the goal of a more humane market and society, must also be pursued in parts of America that have been excluded or marginalized from the influential circles of the global economy.
I have been guilty in the past of wishing everything just happened now! Many times I get frustrated with the lack of progress in SoPho, Between the 7s but I am starting to understand that everything happens for a reason. We should aim towards incremental development in a framework of community solidarity. The people themselves have the prime responsibility to work for their own development and must be directly involved in the planning and implementation of their New American City.