By Charles Sercombe
Not everyone welcomed Gov. Rick Snyder’s visit to Hamtramck last Friday.
Snyder and his top administrators met with community leaders at Polka Dot Bar at Brombach and Yemans to kick off a state program to help Hamtramck, a statewide program called “Project Rising Tide.”
Waiting for the governor’s arrival was Angel Salatrik, who lives across from the bar. On the front of her house was a giant banner that said: “Rick Snyder Poisons Kids!”
The sign was in reference to the Flint water crisis that occurred under Snyder’s administration.
There were also smaller signs, one of which said: “Liar.”
Salatrik said she thought the sign made an impact and that many in the city agree with her.
“I think a lot of the council and mayor agree with it, but can’t say anything.” Salatrik said.
It was not known if Snyder saw the signs. When he arrived he was ushered into the bar through a back door. When he left out through the front door, he did not appear to look across the street and instead made a beeline to a waiting car.
Snyder has been heavily criticized for his administration’s role in switching Flint’s water supply from Detroit to Flint’s former water system. That changeover resulted in a citywide lead poisoning of the water supply, and to this day, some four years later, the city’s drinking water is not considered safe to consume.
The Flint saga may become Snyder’s legacy for his eight years in office. His approval rating is 37 percent is one of the lowest in the nation for governors.
This was Snyder’s second visit to the city in his eight years in office.
The subject of the Flint water crisis did not come up at the meeting. The closest to a jab at the governor came from a substitute teacher who noted that most of the people in attendance were white.
The woman, Kathleen Parks, said those present did not represent the city’s ethnic and racial diversity. She also said that the name of the program, “Rising Tide,” is an odd choice in light of the Flint water crisis.
The meeting broke up after about an hour.