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Truly Right View » Department of Education, Government Waste, Politics, Restoring America, Where is the Main Stream Media? » The Killing of a City

The Killing of a City

In 1960, Detroit had the highest per-capita income in the United

Today, Detroit’s median household income is less than half the
nationwide median household income, the city’s 36 percent poverty
rate is triple the national rate, the proportion of children in
Detroit living in poverty is 57 percent, more than double the
national rate, and roughly half of Detroit’s population is

In 2011, the National Institute for Literacy reported that 47
percent of the residents of Detroit were “functionally

This illiterate half of the city is “not able to fill out basic
forms for getting a job, those types of basic everyday things,”
explained Karen Tyler-Ruiz, Director of the Detroit Regional
Workforce Fund.

And it’s not getting any better for the next generation coming
through Detroit’s  schools – the public schools with the
highest per pupil expenditures in Michigan.

The U.S. Department of Education reported that “only 7 percent
of the eighth graders are grade-level proficient in reading and
only 4 percent are grade-level proficient in math” in Detroit’s
public schools, reports Terence P. Jeffrey at 

“I don’t know how they get by, but they do,” stated Tyler-Ruiz,
referring to Detroit’s illiterates.

How they “get by” isn’t much of a mystery. “There are 264,209
households in Detroit and 91,204 of them — or 34.5 percent — get
food stamps,” reports Jeffrey.

“A tour of Motown’s mean streets should be a regular feature for
policymakers because Detroit is a monument to 45 years of failed
liberal urban policy,” writes Henry Payne, editorial writer at the
Detroit News. “Beyond the city’s downtown square mile of
corporate headquarters and sports stadiums, the tour would reveal
Detroit’s apocalyptic, 137 square miles of abandoned buildings,
empty lots, and violence-torn neighborhoods.”

The “liberal dream” of aggressive anti-poverty urban policy has
turned into a “Detroit nightmare,” contends Payne. 

“America has suffocated Detroit with compassion, pouring
billions of dollars beginning with Lyndon Johnson’s Model Cities
Program in 1966,” argues Payne. “Trouble is, the liberal medicine
turned to poison. Welfare assistance such as Aid to Families with
Dependent Children ripped apart families,” providing “perverse
incentives for father and mother to stay unmarried. Today, 80
percent of Detroit children grow up without a father — up from 25
percent in 1960 before Washington’s welfare largess.”

In effect, Aid for Dependent Children became Aid for Making
Children Dependent on Government.

This collapse of the family as the basic child-raising
institution has produced “a void that breeds every city pathology,”
maintains Payne. “Without fathers as role models, young boys drift
into the city’s 47 percent illiterate class. According to academic
research, over 50 percent of black men in Detroit are high-school
dropouts, 72 percent of them jobless, 60 percent have done prison
time. In 1966 the murder rate stood at 13 per 100,000 residents. By
1976 it had climbed to 51 per 100,000 and has hovered there

Detroit’s population has collapsed from 1,849,568 in 1950 to
701,475 in 2012. “Traditional two-parent families and the
productive taxpaying citizens they produce have fled,” says

Wrote Joan Didion in her 1979 book, The White Album,
“In the years I am writing about I was living in a large house in a
part of Hollywood that had once been expensive and was now
described by one of my acquaintances as a ‘senseless-killing

Payne recommends an “Urban Policy Reality Tour” through
Detroit’s senseless-killing neighborhoods. “Michigan politicians
should take it,” he says. “President Obama should take it.”

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The Killing of a City

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Filed under: Department of Education, Government Waste, Politics, Restoring America, Where is the Main Stream Media? · Tags: , ,

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