While Positive People Group, (PPG), is a new organization, the goals they are trying to achieve, and the obstacles they have to overcome, are as old and tired as the day is long. Can a group of positively thinking people win out over the same old, "Youngstown is Over", mentality. You hear the same old arguments creep up again and again. Downtown Youngstown is not safe. If you provide bussing to the outlying community, it will only attract people with no money in their pocket to the subarbs, and back into downtown. There is no housing downtown to keep the area alive. There is no inftrastructure or services to support housing downtown. Blah, blah, blah. The truthfulness, or lack-there-of, of those statements aside, it is what is constantly being heard on the street and in some of the media. The admirable and attainable goal by the PPG, is to turn those negative comments around to positive affirmations about the City. There are always going to be sour apples in the bushel, but a lot of positve can outweigh the negative if working together as one. I personally believe that, and am trying to do something about that. Many others in the community, and even outside the community with strong ties to the area are trying as well.
Back to my first statement. "I Choose Youngstown"!! That to me is very positive. It's an affirmation that there is something going on here that I agree with, believe in, get behind, support, or am involved in. I consider Youngstown Downtown Director Phil Kidd, to be a friend. Someone I believe in and appreciate his hard work. To be honest, reading his blog, Defend Youngstown, is one of the reasons I steered my company to come to downtown Youngstown last year. However, after listening to the negative comments, constantly being put out there, I believe we have focused on the negative for too long. "Defend Youngstown" is actually sounding negative lately. I know that is not the case, nor the intent, but to "Defend", means you are concentrating on the negative that is coming at you. Now "Choose Youngstown" is positive in it's meaning and intent. Are there problems in Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley? Absolutely! Are there a lot more things going right in Youngstown now and the Valley? Yes! So I too join the commenters above and Choose Youngstown. I hope all of our friends out there decide to Choose Youngstown as well. And Phil, maybe it's time to have a second line of t-shirts. "Choose Youngstown", it's a good choice.........Scott