Good work by the Belleville News-Democrat on exposing East St. Louis Township Supervisor Oliver Hamilton. I think one issue has been overlooked, how Mr. Hamilton is treating his fellow African-Americans. It’s as if we’ve reverted to the 1960s in how blacks are treated.
To house up to 20 elderly African-Americans in his hovel of a fire trap with no visible fire escapes, few windows and missing siding and using wood pallets for a stair rail, as one egregious example, shows his disregard for fellow human beings.
Kudos to the ESL city official who denied his Certificate of Occupancy, but was then overruled by the city leadership at the time, to allow Mr. Hamilton to run his slum rooming house. Anyone who looks at that photo in the BND can’t help but wonder how long the slave plantation mentality will endure at 10 Public Square in which “below the hill” citizens are taken advantage of by even their African-American elected Democrats with what seems to be tacit approval by the powers to be.
You would think the photograph of this shanty was taken in 1929, not 2016. There is no excuse in America for anyone to live like this and especially since Mr. Hamilton owns a so-called construction company getting materials for free from the township. So when the ESL and county Democrats wave at you from their float and throw candy at you in your parade, just remember Cleveland Avenue in East St Louis.
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Phil Henning, Smithton