Why the gentrification hurts New Orleans’ future for Black people
Anyone who's been there wouldn't find this surprising. The places that are the focus of redevelopment areas are the ones that either Black folks never resided in in the first place or that poorer Black folks have been priced out of residing in now. Oh, the wonderful world of gentrification.
This makes sense as the majority of the city was Black and poor. There has definitely been a noticable departure of the black educated as most black professionals were independent contractors: doctors, lawyer, dentist, accountants, insurance salesperson and entrepneurs who serviced the black community. Therefore, if all your clients are gone, then you have to go find new clients. Post Katrina, I have lost my doctor, dentist, graphic artist, printer, baby sitter and lawn man.
More than the economic impact of this exodus, its social impact will on the Black community in New Orleans is potentially the most dangerous one. When [Black] professionals leave an area for good, they take not only their dollars with them, but also their experiences. Kids, especially young Black kids, need to see examples of people that look like them doing different types of things, in different types of professions, and finding different paths to successful lives.
Without these examples, without these mentors, without these relationships, many more young people could fall victim to a subculture that is all too prevalent in poor, urban America: a culture of hopelessness.
One Love. One II.