It’s hard for me to drive court in Detroit. I ride down Woodward Ave. through Detroit and see mile after mile of blight – deserted and burned out homes and businesses, homeless people pushing all their possessions in shopping carts. Even people who have jobs appear to be in shell shock. Who did this to our country, the richest country in the world? I drive across the bridge to Canada; surely, they have poverty too. But nothing like ours.
Detroit is in a depression – not just a recession. There are so many who need so much help. The people don’t want handouts, they just want the opportunity to get a job and support their family. They want an opportunity to have their day in Court when they suffer injustice. Their suffering is something that I can do very little about and that is frustrating. I became a lawyer to help people who are suffering… suffering from injustice. Yet I live in a society that has devolved in the last 8 years into one that is so fundamentally unjust and cruel, economically and socially, that the sheer scale of victims being created is frightening. The people are tired, hungry and feeling hopeless.
You would not believe the line for food at the Capuchin Soup Kitchen and other emergency shelters in Detroit. This is 1929, right? Not 2008?
I feel like I need to do more but I also feel overwhelmed and angry. The Detroit riots happened when I was a teenager growing up in Oak Park, which bordered Detroit. National Guardsmen patrolled the streets and you could see smoke billowing into the sky. You could hear gunfire through the night.
The economic and social injustice that the people of Detroit (and in other cities across the nation) are suffering now is as pronounced as it was then. There are whispers now in the media of an economic collapse. That collapse has already occurred among the poor and even a substantial majority of middle class families in Detroit. I can’t imagine by what grace these people are remaining civil and peaceful.
God help us if this election is stolen like the others.