I don’t know about you but I am still getting laughs out of this video from last month where Black Lives Matter activist Asa Khalif completely destroyed one of the few joys Councilcritters still have: ribbon cuttings. Three minutes in, Councilman Bobby Henon gives up his ribbon cutting press conference for a new bridge in Pennypack Park then starts blowing bubbles and going “wee!”.
Khalif has been specifically targeting press conferences of city officials and going after the official hosting the pressers directly. The reason: elected officials, in particular members of city council, have done little for police reform.
Protesting Henon comes with an added bonus: Henon is still listed as a board member of IBEW98, the electrical worker’s union.
It’s long been an established fact all of the building trades unions in Philadelphia are a majority white, male and suburban-resident membership, with the Laborer’s local being the only exception. For IBEW98 in particular, way more than half the membership lives outside Philadelphia County, primarily in New Jersey.
One of the largest pushers of our city’s Soda Tax legislation was none other than IBEW98 business manager John (“Johnny Doc”) Dougherty. That funding is going towards Rebuild, the city program meant to rehabilitate libraries and rec centers across the city.
Philadelphia tradition dictates that IBEW98 is going to make off like a bandit with the work. Which will be going to a white male suburbanite workforce, out of the pockets of black and brown people who are paying the soda tax.