Los Angeles Metro is putting a new sales tax on the November Ballot
by Channing Martinez on Wednesday, October 19, 2016
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The Strategy Center and Bus Riders Union Versus The MTA
Stop the MTA’s Latest Racist Climate Attack Sales Tax
Vote No on MTA Ballot Measure M
The Fight for the Soul of the Cities
The Fight for the Soul of the Movement
Which Side Are You On?
Los Angeles Metro is putting a new sales tax on the November Ballot.
They called it Prop R 2. We call it Prop Racism x2
This would be their fourth sales tax since 1980. They already have $5 billion of our money.
The MTA is a known civil rights violator. Their goals are clear.
Build up a Rail and Highway Empire—Destroy the Public Bus System
Gentrify L.A. and Drive Black and Latino working communities out of LA.
Criminalize Black life. Assault, insult, ticket, and arrest Black passengers
Destroy Public Transportation, Deny Global Warming, Build More Highway. Burn the Planet.
Tax you again and again.
We Believe that We Can Win. We need you to Vote No on MTA Ballot Measure M
For years we were leaders of a broad movement to defeat LA Metro’s sales taxes including Measure J. On November 8th we are predicting a victory – the building of a vibrant movement that slows down the racist gentrification plan for the region, builds a movement for Black and Brown Power against the neo-liberal racist privatizing, polluting, policing agenda of the Democratic Party establishment, a climate justice victory that rejects the failed rail and highway expansion experiment and delivers a blow against the racist ‘stop and frisk’ and attacks on the Black community.
We need you to join our Movement for Black, Latino, and Planetary Liberation
Can we count on your support?
We call on Natural Resources Defense Council, Coalition for Clean Air, Climate Resolve, Sierra Club, the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, NAACP, East L.A. Community Corporation, One-LA and ACT-LA to Vote No on this Ballot Measure. We welcome presentations to your organization to explain our views and win your support.
Call us at 213-387-2800 to join the winning fight.
We need your support for our Fight for the Soul of the Cities Demands
Vote No on Measure M and Repeal Measure R
Restore 1 million hours of bus service
Stolen from the Bus Riders Union by the MTA
No Fare — Free Public Transit
Stop the Attacks on Black Riders — No Stop and Frisk
No Arrests and tickets for “fare evasion”
No L.A. Sheriffs and MTA Police on MTA Buses and Trains
Expand the bus fleet to 5,000 zero-emissions buses
24/7 bus service
1000 more buses now
Moratorium on all Rail and Highway projects
No Cars in L.A. — Bus-only lanes
Auto-free zones, days, and rush hours, Freeway bus service, expanded bike and pedestrian infrastructure
Support the Crenshaw Subway Coalitions’ demand to Build the Park Mesa Heights Tunnel The Crenshaw Light Rail line should be underground for 11 blocks; from 48th St. to 59th St.
Let’s Look at the Facts—And Look in the Mirror
We know the racism, duplicity, and climate destruction of the MTA only too well.
The MTA has violated the 1964 Civil Rights Act. In September 1, 2004, the Strategy Center and Bus Riders Union, represented by the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, took the MTA to court for violating the civil rights of 500,000 Black, Latino, and Asia/Pacific Islander bus/rail riders. We argued that the MTA, by eliminating the bus/rail pass and building rail projects by cutting bus service against and eliminating the monthly bus pass on Black and Latino low-income riders, were violating the 14th amendment and Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. The courts agreed with us. We won a major civil rights Consent Decree and for 10 years the Strategy Center was the court recognized Class Representative for 500,000 bus and rail riders.
The Strategy Center and the federal courts forced the MTA to increase bus service by 1 million hours and put over 2500 new buses on the streets. The MTA, after the Consent Decree expired, cut the 1 million hours we won in under three years. Have any of you helped us fight to get them back?
The Strategy Center saved the Los Angeles MTA monthly pass in 1994, forced the MTA to lower the monthly bus/rail pass to $42 a month. Bus and Rail ridership went up dramatically.
But after the Consent Decree expired in 2006 the MTA raised the monthly bus pass from $52 to $62 to $75 to $100. And as the Strategy Center and Bus Riders Union tried to fight them the LA County Federation of Labor supported MTA construction and did nothing to fight for 500,000 Black and Latino working class bus riders.
After over $10 billion of corporate profit from public funds, the MTA has built 90 miles of rail, and has destroyed the bus system. After all this toxic use of public funds Transit Ridership is Down!!! The only things that are up at the MTA are racism, fares, criteria pollutants, air toxins, greenhouse gas emissions, highway construction, and tickets against Black and Latino transit riders for “fare evasion” that is, not paying their fares after they have paid $5 billion to the MTA through sales tax after sales tax. And yet, too many Environmental Groups in L.A. have been unwilling to stand up to the MTA and have not fought for transit riders. This has to stop.
Now we will urge voters who stand for civil rights, the working class, communities of color, public health, and the planet to oppose Measure M
Measure M is a blank check for Metro to continue its war on bus riders forever and ever. Measure M’s aim is to accelerate and expand LA Metro’s long-range highway and rail construction. This time around the LA Metro even made sure this new sales tax wouldn’t even secure specific bus operation funds into Measure M formula; it would relegate it to a permanent third-class status, all the while squeezing billons out of LA’s Black and Brown communities.
Measure M is for gentrification and displacement in working class neighborhoods. Metro is busy building down and up while the poor are being pushed out in all directions. A defeat of Measure M will be an important victory to reject the corporate driven, real estate driven gentrification ploy to displace and remove Black and Brown communities.
Stop the Greenwashing! Measure M is a disaster for our health and for the planet. Measure J will accelerate and expand Metro’s freeway construction bonanza. Let’s be real there’s no way any true climate solution initiative would expand highway by $20 billion in the car capital of the world.
Measure M is corporate welfare for the 1% and a financial disaster for 99%. Major construction and engineering firms -- e.g. Parsons Brinckerhoff (PB) and Aecom, both of which also earn war profits through hefty contracts with the US military -- stand to make billions of dollars from these tax-funded projects.
Measure M’s vision must be replaced by the Fight for the Soul of the Cities and Bus Riders Union pro-civil rights, pro-environment transit vision that creates more permanent jobs than the alternative. Doubling the bus fleet and converting to a zero-emission bus system, building bus rapid transit corridors, creating new freeway express buses, and free fares —all of this can be put in place in a few short years using currently available public funds without a new tax.
Stop the Genocide Against the Black Nation, LA Metro End Your Attack on the Black community—End LA Metro’s Transit Apartheid. For LA Metro Black Lives, Don’t Matter. LA Metro criminalizes black riders who are only 19% of riders, but make up over 50% of all LA Metro fare citations, fines and arrest are Black riders on Metro rails – Black riders are stopped, check, profiled, frisked, cited, fined, jailed, and beaten all forms of dehumanization of Black life to ensure a sterile lily white rail experience for LA Metro imaginary and non-existing choice rider. The current war on the Black Nation is so present in the US criminal legal system and the modern day ‘black codes’ under the name of ‘stop and frisk’ and so reflective in the spectate lynching of Black men, women and children by police. In Los Angeles, Black Genocide is so present in the dispersal of the Black community out of south Los Angeles, large scale unemployment, asthma clusters throughout South Los Angeles sandwiched in between four major freeways.
We Need To Hear From You, Give Us A Call Us
The Labor/Community Strategy Center
3780 Wilshire Boulevard, #1200, Los Angeles, CA 90010
213-387-2800 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Facebook: FightForTheSoulOfTheCities Twitter: @fightsoulcities fightforthesoulofthecites.com
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