Everyone's focus in Detroit presently is on the bankruptcy. Someone needs to start planning for a city that has turned around and is growing. This will not happen without a plan and its time to develop and implement one.
A turnaround will not happen without an increase in the city's population and average incomes. Blight needs removing, crime needs to be reduced and street lights turned on. The bull dog, Dan Gilbert, is focused on blight removal and I am confident it will happen. The new police chief is making strides in crime reduction and there is focus, in no small part due to the laser beam attention of the Detroit Free Press, to get the street lights back on.
Detroit has one advantage over other municipalities in the region, an available existing housing stock. It is not too early to draft plans on how best to utilize it to attract new residents and increase the average income of the city's population. This will require effort and creativity. The city and its residents must think out of the box,. Instead of white flight, the city's residents need to think of how to entice whites to the city.
For many current residents of the city this will require a change in attitude. For many blacks this will not be easy. There is still resentment due to the historical mistreatment by the white race, my race. Frankly, due to the magnitude and longevity of the mistreatment, I understand the resentment. Understanding history does nothing to change history. For the survival of the city I hope, and believe, most blacks are ready to forgive and accept whites into your great city. If you don't, the city may never recover.
Many in the white race must also have a change in attitude. It is time to accept the reality that many of our forefathers committed crimes against humanity by enslaving and degrading members of the black race. We cannot, and should not, hide from this reality. Sometimes we have shaded glasses on when we look back at history and gloat at the fact that we have "come a long way" since the 1950's and 1960's. I confess that I feel proud of the progress made over the past 50 years. Then I recall that many of the whites involved in the original settlements of this continent had black slaves. Further, a number of our Founding Fathers were slave owners. We must recognize fifty years of progress does not erase several hundreds of years of mistreatment. Feel good about our progress but don't believe the debt is totally paid.
The good news is those whites who cannot get over their hate and fear of blacks will not come back no matter what. I believe in the year 2013 they are a minority part of the race and the city should not worry about them. The vast majority of whites presently in the suburbs are ready to move to Detroit given the right opportunity. Detroit needs to develop and implement a plan that offers such an opportunity, This includes The Detroit Home Rush of 2014-15 and the Detroit Promise. How can anyone resist a great free home and a free college education for their children.
Let's do it!!