District Digest: Bustin’ loose for the late Chuck Brown

This week in D.C. news features Chuck Brown’s memorial service, a Washington Times columnist’s worst work, and the latest on the D.C. Council’s vote on whether to give city employees back pay.

Chuck Brown memorial service

The late, great, pioneer of go-go music Chuck Brown passed away on May 16. Our nation’s capital celebrated Brown in the funkiest way possible: a four-hour-long dance party. Yep, that’s right.

Thousands of people gathered yesterday at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center for the memorial service. Several District officials and Mayor Vincent Gray spoke at the event and promised to name a park after the legend that was Brown, nicknamed by some as the “Godfather of Go-Go.”

Brown was 75 when he died in John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore of multiple organ failures, according to the Washington Post.

If you feel like bustin’ loose on these hot and humid summer days, Vox recommends you break it down in honor of Chuck and his long list of soulful contributions to D.C.’s music scene.

Capital Bikeshare users don’t even know they are Red sympathizers

Columnist for The Washington Times Charles Hurt wrote a pretty appalling editorial on Tuesday about the Capital Bikeshare system in D.C. According to Hurt, users of capital bikeshare are unwittingly participating in a scheme he calls “broken-down socialism.” Not only was the editorial logic-defying, some are also outraged because its sexist. Here are a couple of the better excerpts:

The bikes are shaped like the old-timey “girl bikes” without the crossbar, making them suitable for un-liberated women in skirts as well as these so-called “metrosexual” males everybody keeps talking about in these parts.

His concluding sentence (mildly concerning, calls into question Hurt’s sanity levels):

My personal pride in the program reached a new level last week after reading about a woman in my neighborhood who was talking on her cellular phone. A thug rode by on a bike, slapped her and swiped her phone.

D.C. Council to vote on workers’ back pay

Last year, District employees were forced to take off four days without pay (President’s Day, Emancipation Day, Memorial Day, and the Fourth of July).  On Tuesday, the D.C. Council will vote on the repayment of these 20,000 employees. The total compensation cost would be $22 million, according to the Post. Mayor Gray asked employees to take off these days to balance the city’s budget. However, the revenue reports from this and last year indicate that the budget ended up with a surplus of $240 million.  Gray and Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown are pushing for the vote to address this issue. In the past month some workers have started online petitions to demand repayment for these lost pay days.

Vox here resurrects the age-old feature, providing our dear readers with a brief summary on what happened in D.C. this week. There is, of course, a lot we haven’t covered in this post.

Photo by City Paper’s Darrow Montgomery

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