As the story of the poisoning of Flint continues to generate national attention, one of the more controversial debates is “why Flint”? Many people (including presidential wannabes Clinton and Sanders) correctly point out that Flint is poor, majority minority and Democratic-leaning politically.
Of course they have been blasted for speculating about a racial/class explanation (rather than the leading alternative explanation of gross incompetence of the Snyder Administration), but research on water quality in Michigan areas provides a clear – and very disturbing — trend.
Few people realize it, but lead content in the water in many other areas of Michigan actually exceed the levels found in Flint. It’s true… “Pure Michigan” is potentially poisoning far more people than those in Flint. That is shocking enough … that water quality in a state surrounded by the largest volumes of fresh water in the world is worse than third world counties in many areas, but a study of water quality by mean income is even more revealing.
The areas with the highest lead content in the water are areas with the lowest mean incomes in the state, and are predominantly minority populations. Flint is the tip of an iceberg of the failure of government, primarily conservative Republican government, to serve the most vulnerable citizens. For data on the lead content in your zip code check out this site: