April 18


Sizing up the challenges in D5

Illustration by Jeremiah TeutschIllustration by Jeremiah TeutschWith budding flowers emerging from their stringy branches, the peach trees in my backyard on the near South Side of San Antonio are showing signs of life. This means two things: spring is near, and considering it’s an odd-number year, City Council elections are just around the corner.

All Council district elections – not to mention the inevitable reelection of Mayor Julian Castro – are important. But the race that’s shaping up in District 5 has been garnering extra attention. The district is represented by the young and some would say unimposing David Medina. Recent coverage of Medina – or according to his critics, the empty chair that has begun to characterize his two-term tenure – has put the spotlight on a district whose neighborhoods are a defining feature of the soul of San Antonio.

The West Side has produced venerable politicians such as Henry B. Gonzalez, Henry Cisneros, and the Castro brothers. Yet despite boasting two native-born sons who are currently in the upper echelons of local and national politics, the district still lags far behind in economic development and progress compared to other areas of this rapidly evolving city.

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