By Lindsay Toler
By Chad Garrison
By Brett Koshkin
By RFT Staff
By Lindsay Toler
By Riverfront Times
By Danny Wicentowski
By Pete Kotz
There are many great neighborhoods in St. Louis. Some, like the Loop, are rebounding, while others are slipping. For the benefit of all, I would love to see the city and county merge, but maybe not necessarily in the traditional sense. Perhaps St. Louis and St. Louis County could merge and form an umbrella government that could oversee major infrastructure needs and pool resources for the good of all in the community, while neighborhoods retain (and even gain) more autonomy. Issues like design standards for street signs — which streets to make one-way and which businesses to attract or ban — could be decided by the "new" neighborhood-cities. Right now, an alderman in north St. Louis needs to spend valuable time learning about a potential development on Kingshighway in south St. Louis. If that alderman and other neighborhood leaders could spend all their time on their own areas, more positive activity might be the result. If people believe their hard work really can make a difference and it's focused on a manageable area, they can reclaim urban and suburban areas that have declined.
Bob Cassilly, founder, City Museum
I would have Emily Pulitzer redeem herself by buying back the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and reselling it to a real newspaper — or selling it to Christine Bertelson. If she did that, I'd start buying the paper again.
I would change the segregation and under-the-radar racism in St. Louis. I'm the father of a biracial child, and I keep asking why people act the way they do. If I had the answer to that question, I'd be a billionaire speaker on some circuit. We need to be able to get people to see beyond the surface. We need more interaction, more activity, more self-awareness and people acknowledging that they have this bias, and then delve into the why.
Joe Hanrahan, actor, director and playwright, The Midnight Company in South St. Louis City
If I could improve one thing about St. Louis, I would improve its perception of the arts of St. Louis. St. Louis generously supports (and St. Louis media over-generously covers) the arts in St. Louis — visiting actors, artists, musicians, dancers, artistic heads, companies — swinging through town, selling their wares. St. Louis should continue that. But we have to improve our awareness, appreciation and support of the arts of St. Louis — actors, artists, etc. — living and creating here. It's the soul of our community. How? 1) Media of all kinds have to devote much more thoughtful coverage to the arts of St. Louis; and 2) The actors, artists, et cetera then have to deliver the goods.
Chris King, editor, The St. Louis American
I'd recall the mayor. And if he doesn't stand down, then I'd beat him in the recall election and beat him with a candidate that has better political instincts for power-sharing in a diverse and majority-black city. It wouldn't have to be a black mayor, but it would have to be a mayor with better power-sharing instincts with the black community and its elected leaders.
McGraw Milhaven, host, The McGraw Show, KTRS-550 AM
Get bartender Mark Pollman his job back at Fox & Hounds. It has been two years and I miss my friend. Who would have thought that St. Louis would miss his gruff attitude, lame trivia and puffy shirt? I have not been back since he was fired and will not return until he's behind the stick. Since I have boycotted, I haven't enjoyed Bill Benson either. You might call him the piano player for Fox & Hounds, but I call him the most romantic man in town and my friend. I miss the baseball song. Have you noticed the decline of Western culture since Pollman's been gone? The housing woes? The rift between Tony La Russa and Scott Rolen? All have gotten worse since we last saw Pollman behind a slab of oak. Bring him back and all of St Louis' troubles will be washed away.