Last week, PJ Harvey shared “The Community Of Hope,” one of the songs from her forthcoming album The Hope Six Demolition Project. The song was inspired by a visit to Ward 7, one of the neighborhoods in our nation’s capital. Harvey saw it as a stark example of urban blight, seeing “just drug town, just zombies” and singing that maybe they would build a Wal-Mart there. (In fact, the retail giant recently abandoned plans to build in Ward 7.) And as DCist reports, the city council candidates of Ward 7 have heard “The Community Of Hope,” and they aren’t impressed.
The former Washington mayor Vince Gray, currently running for his old city council seat, says, “I will not dignify this inane composition with a response,” while Gray’s campaign treasurer Chuck Thies says, “PJ Harvey is to music what Piers Morgan is to cable news.”
Meanwhile, Grant Thompson, another council candidate, says that Harvey “needs to see more of the city.” He does, however, consider Harvey’s line about how there’s only one sit-down restaurant in the whole area. (There are actually three.) And he offers this: “One of the promises I’m making is that we’re going to bring more restaurants to Ward 7. We’re the last frontier in terms of development. We have one grocery store in the entire ward. I attribute that to poor leadership.”
But Thompson’s realest quote is probably this: “I really didn’t get the song. I didn’t.” Finally: an honest politician.