Hiding in Plain Sight: The Walls That Divide Us

In class Wednesday, March 26, 2014 we talked about the service trip most of my Leader Advancement cohort are going on this weekend in Detroit. We talked about what we are going to do and how everything is going to go. We talked about who is going to facilitate at the Jalen Rose Leadership Academy. We talked about what questions we had about the trip like, “What are you hoping to gain from this trip, or what are you afraid of when we go to Detroit?” There was one thing though that we did that stuck out to me the most. It was when Jesi showed us a video called Hiding in Plain Sight: The Walls That Divide Us.

The video talked about how decades of housing inequality in Detroit has lead to many problems. This video really hit home because I don’t come from a huge place like Detroit, I come from a small town of about 200 people, but my mom grew up in Detroit and I have family that live in the InterCitys around Detroit, so I have been there and know what it looks like and what goes on there. It is heartbreaking that almost 150 years ago African American people were set free from the chains of slavery, but were still discriminated against after given their freedom. African American’s are still discriminated against today. It might not be in plain view, but it is out there where everyone looks past and doesn’t realize it is right in front of them. In the video it talks about the wall being a physical barrier between African American’s and Whites and that African American’s couldn’t live on both sides of the wall. Today though African American’s can live on both sides of the wall, but all of the whites moved to the other side of the county line called 8 Mile Road. Even though there isn’t a physical barrier in plain sight along 8 Mile Road, there is a psychological barrier separating Whites and African American’s. I want there to be a way that people can view themselves as equals, but I don’t think it will ever happen. The invisible chains of discrimination will always be there holding people back from actually viewing each other as equals.