And yes, white real estate people also played into this "white flight" through scare tactics which are illegal but made people not qualified to sell anything star "sales people" in the real estate business. Listings was like taking orders for a hot commodity. And just like the Fannie/Freddie debacle we've seen with the financial meltdown of 2008 the lady who purchased my mothers home did so with $50 down, the balance on loan.
Expansion may have helped but economic planning could have been diverted if you had a mayor that really cared about Gary but was too busy traveling, particularly with frequent trips to the Virgin Islands. When Dutch elm disease hit Gary the federal government supplied equipment and millions of dollars to contend with the problem via tree removal. That money quietly disappeared for a different purpose and urban economics was not one of them.
I also remember the hatred and violence that ensued with the election of Hatcher. Why would whites wish to stay in a city engulfed in threats to property and life with a mayor who quietly promoted it. Certainly people were willing to give up their property and upend their lives to escape for something better and safer. Hatcher wanted Gary turned over to the black citizens lock, stock and barrel and work to that end. There is no mystery here, and territory expansion is not an excuse. Take a look at the photos here -->>http://www.forbidden-places.net/urban-exploration-gary-indiana-ghost-town#1 tells a story unto itself.
On my trip through Gary, Lew Wallace H.S., once known for higher education and a model in Gary and USA, is now closed and merely lurking in the snowy climate. Expanded since my days one really has to wonder if that was necessary with dwindling class sizes compared to a graduating class of 511 in 1967 and standards to academic adherence that could never be met today. The new caretakers under Richard G. Hatcher wanted power but couldn't handle that and they attached greed with total mismanagement and blamed the steel economy. It's always someone else's fault. Some things never would change in Gary. Did I say corruption?
My home was "intact" but the garage was gone, the huge backyard maple tree gone, and the white picket fence gone!
No, I didn't take any pictures but my mood was one of gloom and sadness as I drove up and down streets getting from one destination to another. I drove past my brother's home in the Morningside area which was still standing but the house next door (on the corner) once occupied by pathologists has given in to ply wood window treatments and is abandoned.
Gary, Indiana where my very large church was burned to the ground and my priest beaten to a pulp with baseball bats my four thugs - two men, two women - all for $2 and an old wrist watch. The perpetrators were not white. My grandmothers home, once of the first built in East Glen Park had be burned to the ground also and has been replaced with an overgrown empty lot.
It actually took me several days to recover from this short day trip. I expected as much but to see it in person didn't leave me speechless (surprise) but I won't print my exact feelings here but may write extensively on my blog.
Gary was a terrific town to live in but people wanted something they couldn't afford and Hatcher used federal law to accommodate them. The current mayor is as corrupt and ignorant as any before him, white or black. Politicians work for their own survival and blame others when things don't go well. Richard G. Hatcher has no further to look than his own face in a mirror. Now teaching law at Valparaiso University he is still blaming everyone else for what he helped initiate. Hatcher's failed "Black Utopia", indeed.
And to the IUN professor and the producer concerning danger - the statistics don't lie so quit making excuses and calling it "racism." The money that has continued to "disappear" is what we in economics call - good money chasing bad. Ask the politicians and hear the lie.
Racism in any fashion is poison to society. We used the term "reverse racism" and Hatcher turned it into an art form. Racism is now hit the highest echelons of government, particularly in the White House and Attorney General's office.
Hope and Change - where have we heard that before? Stagnant promises and more lies. Develop your own hope and change - G.O.Y.A!
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