This is Not the Birmingham of 1962; 2012 is Here
May 23, 2012
The racial current in the region is stronger than many want to admit, just as in America overall. Detroit is nearby and no one wants Detroit in the present image to become part of an affluent community. The fear of Detroit is real, and has been for decades. Images of "scary minorities" or troublemakers fuel this fear. But a few bad actors do not speak for Detroit.
In truth, behavior that seems unconventional or possibly threatening is no longer assigned to the one group of young people. Hip hop is not one-dimensional and includes all types of youth, my research confirms unquestionably. Hmong, Eastern European, African Americans, Latino and some well-to-do-youth from affluent communities besides Birmingham are in the mix. Young women are included, as well as many in the gay community. (read full commentary by Dr. Carl Taylor)