By: Richard H. Frank
Those of us fortunate enough to have been raised in the City of Detroit during the 1940s and 1950s carry memories of a vibrant, warm, industrious city with thriving civic centers and a downtown area possessing museums, theaters, luxury hotels, fine department stores and elegant restaurants. Some of the finest public parks were located within the city limits and along the riverfront where Bell Isle provided Detroiters an escape from the drudgery of work and the impact of World War II and The Korean conflict that followed.
The public education system within the city was superior and prepared their graduates with a solid foundation in the three “Rs” as well as a thorough understanding of accurate and “unedited” World and American history, social studies and civics. The High School curriculum gave students the option to pursue three fields of study. The offerings included a General Education program or a vocational -geared curriculum and of course a College Preparatory program. Those students that did not meet standards for advancement were held back and required to repeat their studies until meeting the minimum standard. Upon graduation from high school and entering college I found that most all required freshman courses had been covered during high school and made the transition to college life particularly easy.
Opportunity for young people to embark upon a career was varied and unlimited particularly in the Automotive Industry or other supporting businesses. Detroit was truly the Motor City with great companies such as General Motors, Ford Motor Company, Chrysler, Packard, Hudson and Kaiser-Frazer all having headquarters or operations in the Metropolitan Detroit Area. Machine tool builders thrived during the war and continued to grow as demand for American made automobiles continued to increase. All seemed bright for the future of this the fourth largest city in America up until 1967 and the civil unrest that ensued then and for years that followed.
The City became the model for Lyndon Baines Johnson’s “Great Society” which flourished in Detroit. Welfare took root within the minority segment of the cities population and was spurred on with Aid to Dependent Children that rewarded women for birthing children with no male to provide support. Today hundreds of thousands exist on Federal Well fare, free housing and food stamps.
Frosty Wooldridge a US Journalist chronicles the demise of this once great city under the banner of “Multiculturalism: a perfect method to kill our language, culture country and way of life.” He writes that between 1970 and 1990 he watched Detroit descend into the abyss of crime, debauchery, gun play, drugs, school truancy, car-jacking, murder, gangs and human depravity. Urban renewal came in the form of burning entire city blocks on each October 30 in celebration of Devil’s Night. All of this occurring under the leadership of a corrupt city government headed by Mayor Coleman Young.
During the same timeframe the Federal Government imposed onerous fuel and safety standards upon the Automotive Industry greatly increasing the cost of manufacturing vehicles and impacting market share for the domestic manufacturers. These actions by government coupled with management agreeing to continued union demands for increased wages and benefits were the first crippling blows to an industry following the same path to self destruction as had the Steel Industry in America just a few short years earlier. The seeds to the demise of manufacturing in America were sown during this period and Detroit would be the first casualty among many cities to follow.
The policies of the Coleman Young administration and the Detroit City Counsel set the benchmark for cronyism, incompetence and arrogance. The Mayor is quoted to have said “As a black man, I am the MFIC.” The IC stands for in charge. You can fill in the rest. Detroit was fundamentally transformed from a city with a mix of ethnic heritage including German, Italian, French, Latino and English to a population having 67% African Americans. The change was largely due to the exit of the city population. Detroit plummeted from the fourth largest city in America to the eleventh and continues to slip each year. At one point the city boasted 1.8 million citizens and now is approximately 912,000. Legal and illegal immigrants have filled the void of those leaving the city. Muslims account for over 300,000 and Mexicans number 400,000 throughout Michigan many of whom are attracted by the numerous welfare programs available in the state.
The call to worship for Muslims is heard over the city and seems to many like America’s Baghdad. High school drop-out rates exceed 75% and classrooms resemble more foreign countries than America where few speak English and illiteracy rate is 50% and rising.
Unemployment within the city hit 28.9% last year as the auto industry left the city. By any quantifiable measure Detroit is on life support left in the grip of incompetent city government and unions such as the Teacher’s Union that make no concessions to improve their situation.
In Time Magazine’s October 4, 2009 article entitled, “The Tragedy of Detroit”, Daniel Okrent stated “That because the story of Detroit is not simply one of a great city’s collapses, it’s also about the erosion of the industries that helped build the country as we know it today. The ultimate fate of Detroit will reveal much about the character of America in the 21st century.”
In Detroit we reap what we have sown. First the attack on our education system and the dumbing down of America, followed by unending welfare programs, well intended but destructive, as we reward people for making no contribution to taking care of themselves or their family. Next, continuing the unrelenting attack on the free enterprise system by government with regulations that stifle economic growth.
We need to take a lesson from countries like the Netherlands where immigrants from Middle East Muslim countries have established ghettos that breed home grown terrorists intent on imposing their radical ideology upon others. We have seen it in Madrid, Spain, London, England, Paris and France with bombing of trains and subways and riots. As their numbers grow so will their power to enact Sharia Law that negates republican forms of government.
You will not find Multiculturalism and Political Correctness mentioned anywhere in our Constitution. These are the creation of the political progressives and liberals in government and if allowed to grow unchecked will make every large city in America follow Detroit to their eventual end as a center of terrorism and tyranny. President Obama has pledged to fundamentally change America. This is not the kind of change Americans want.
I knew and lived in Detroit when it was a jewel. I fear that this once great city will not be able to rise from the ashes and return to its previous status in my life time. Let’s hope and pray that I am wrong.
And by the way, where is any reporting whatsoever on either network news or cable news stations, of the economic conditions of this great city? You can’t have an honest debate about welfare programs, unions, job losses, or the economic condition of our country without shining the spotlight on what has happened in Detroit.
Filed under: Education, Free enterprise system, Immigration, Jobs, The President, U. S. Constitution, War on Terror | Tagged: automotive industry, constitution, Detroit, free enterprise, General Motors, Government, Illegal Immigration, jobs, Multiculturalism, Obama, Political Correctness, welfare | 1 Comment »