In fact, what happened in Detroit after the '67 riots and white flight was the beginning of the collapse.
In 1960, Detroit’s population was 1.6 million. Blacks were 29 percent, and whites were 70 percent. Today, Detroit’s population has fallen precipitously to 707,000, of which blacks are 84 percent and whites 8 percent. Much of the city’s decline began with the election of Coleman Young, Detroit’s first black mayor and mayor for five terms, who engaged in political favoritism to blacks and tax policies against higher income mostly white people. Young’s successors, Dennis Archer and Kwame Kilpatrick, followed his Third World tyrant policies, but neither had his verbal vulgarity.
Policies that ran whites and other more affluent people out of Detroit might have been Young’s and his successors’ strategy. After all, why not get rid of people who aren’t going to vote for you anyway? The problem is that getting rid of these people left Detroit with a lower tax base, fewer jobs and fewer consumers.
Michigan Central Station - Detroit
Fewer whites might be good for the careers of black politicians, but it’s not in the best interests of ordinary blacks. Blacks have political control of Detroit, but the relevant question is whether some control of something is better than 100 percent control of nothing.
Detroit topped Forbes magazine’s 2010 list of America’s Most Dangerous Cities. That year there were 345 homicides, but that’s going to be topped with this year’s 365 homicides so far.
Hard to believe that in the 1920s, Detroit had the tallest buildings in America and a thriving arts and culture industry. Of course, the city was more than 90 percent white. The cosmopolitan attitude cultivated in Detroit, with architects building towers that jettisoned into the sky at heights previously unseen in the entire world, earned the city the title of “The Paris of the West.” Now, those largely empty buildings stand as a monument to ‘what could have been’ in a city that wasn’t ravaged by unions, liberalism, or a natural disaster.
It was neglected by its majority population that took over the city in the wake of the 1967 riots.
In 1950, Detroit was known to the World as the “Paris of the West.” Boasting a thriving economy and a population of more than 2 million people (80 percent being white), the sky seemed the only limit for this city on the move.
In 1967, the “Arsenal of Democracy” would be home to the worst riot in American history as the Black population of Detroit – roughly 30 percent of the population at the time– would explode in an orgy of violence that was only stopped when the Army marched into town to restore order.
The white population of the city would flee for the suburbs, leaving the remaining Black population in political control of the city’s destiny.
In 2012, order still hasn’t been restored.
Now, a city of roughly 770,000 inhabitants (89 percent Black) has collapsed in a sea of financial mismanagement, crime, drugs, broken schools, eroding infrastructure, and hopelessness.
Detroit’s predominantly black public schools are close to being the worst in the nation, perhaps with the exception of those of Washington, D.C. Only 4 percent of Detroit’s eighth-graders scored proficient or above on the most recent National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) test, sometimes called “The Nation’s Report Card.”
Unbeknownst to most black parents is the fact that most black students who manage to graduate from high school cannot read and compute any better than whites four years younger and still in junior high school.
Here’s a question for you: If we put a group of 100 students of any race having an eighth-grade level of proficiency and another group of 100 students of any race with a 12th-grade level of proficiency in college, is it reasonable to expect the first group to perform as well as the second?
Detroit’s social pathology is seen in other cities with large black populations such as Philadelphia, Newark, Baltimore and Chicago. These are cities where blacks have for years dominated the political machinery in the forms of mayors, police chiefs, superintendents of schools and city councilmen, plus they’ve been Democrats.
It’s safe to conclude that the focus on political power doesn’t do much for ordinary blacks.