Detroit has been in a free fall for 50 years. After saddling Detroit with institutionalized racism and after pulling out the core of Detroit’s economy, centralized industrial military, and auto manufacturing, after having created an obsoleted urban housing system, after having swelled racial divisiveness to a tender box, and after having incited generations of oppressed black youth to react in desensitized violence, whites packed up their belongings, built highways, and skedaddled out of town.
Now, quite understandably, Mayor Coleman, who had dabbled as a youth in socialism as his potential answer to oppression, when elected the first black mayor during white flight, reacted with a sense of indignity. “Who needs deserters” was perhaps a normal reaction to have. But Detroit found during his 20 years that it did need investment, the very type of investment that had fled the city before his arrival.
And Mayor Archer, understanding the need for collaboration, did enlist the help of white business leaders in his efforts. It’s just that the generation that had just left Detroit hadn’t yet figured out that what Detroit now needed was transformation, not simply architectural monuments to lure shoppers back into a dying industrial town.
When their efforts failed, Detroit brought in what could have been fresh thinking to revitalize the city when they elected their youngest Mayor ever, Kwame Patrick. Yet, he turned out to be the poster child for white bigotry. Mr. Patrick gave into his base desires and missed out on the glory of raising up Detroit.
In his stead, Detroit elected a man of principle to follow the character of Mayor Archer. Mayor Bing had earlier shown his tenacity and leadership in the NBA, and he had proved his business leadership with his successful company. Mayor Bing was the right leader for Detroit. Yet he was taking the helm of Detroit in its final throws.
When Mayor Bing came to office, Detroit was already bleeding $150 million a year in deficits. When he came to office, the United States of America was already on its knees in the greatest recession since the Great Depression.
Read the tweet posts from above and you can see into Mayor Bing’s mind. He learned quickly what must be done. Within his powers, he orchestrated a great deal more than his predecessors had done in the previous 40 years tp redirect Detroit’s future toward a thriving path forward. Detroit is on the brink of being able to exercise a posterity that can either be aided by this emergency manager or obliterated by him.
A red flag of urgent observation and participation has now been thrown into the arena….
My hat’s off though to Mayor Bing!!!