One year. One city. Endless opportunities.

Can Detroit Prevent a Return of 'Devil's Night'?

A dying auto industry, failing schools, rampant unemployment and a home foreclosure crisis: Detroit has no shortage of ills, but in recent years it has made progress combating the city's notorious tradition known as Devil's Night, the period leading up Halloween each year when scores of buildings would be torched. Yet earlier this month, when nearly a dozen vacant homes were set afire in the span of a weekend, authorities here feared the worst: The real estate crisis that has hit Detroit particularly hard would mean a resurgence of Devil's Night.

Locals are working hard, however, to not allow that to happen. Thousands of people from across the country — including Guardian Angles from New York City — are arriving to patrol, hoping to prevent the burning of vacant buildings and cars. Many residents will sit on their front porches, watching for prospective arsonists. Wooden boards have been placed across the doors and windows of vacant buildings to keep out intruders. On street posts and buildings across the city, there are signs saying, "THIS BUILDING IS BEING WATCHED," above a sketch of a set of human eyes. "Obviously, I'm nervous," Detroit's mayor, Dave Bing, said in an interview earlier this week, when asked about the possibility that homes here may become targets for arsonists as Halloween approached. "But we need to be observant, and I think our community has gotten engaged."

Read the full story here.

See a slide show about Detroit's Devil's/Angels' Night tradition.

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  • 1

    Devil's night has provided Detroit a bit of fame - or does that make the city infamous? I hope they're successful in avoiding its return. One has to wonder if a portion of society that is so bent on destruction wouldn't better off joining the flames.

  • 2

    Devil' Night is over, and as usual, nothing horrible happened. Every year the local newscasters make a big deal out of Oct 30th. It's not 1984 anymore, the fires have died down. Detroit hates the bad publicity but the local news keeps the pot boiling by churning up Devil's Night history. Do they want the fires to rage again just to have a "Breaking News you heard it here first!" story? Keep talking about it, and it may happen...........

  • 3

    This story is about 15 years too late. We haven't had a serious Devil's Night around here since then. If anything, there are fewer fires around this time due to all the patrols combing the neighborhoods. This article is essentially a manufactured topic.

  • 4

    Coleman Young retired, and his cronies stopped torching their own buildings. A few residual outbreaks based on the myth still inspire a few fires, but not like in the heyday of Young. Good riddance! Bong sounds like he could be really good for Detroit, certainly better than his predecessor. In that position, there will always be people who hate what you are doing, but the man sounds like he has a head on his shoulders and the best interests of the city -- instead of himself -- at heart.

  • 5

    October 30th is just any other day.

    My boyfriend's parents made a good observation today. The "punk kids" that would be likely candidates for setting stuff on fire these days...weren't even born when this was all actually happening. But, if they watch all these sensationalist stories on the news every year, they might just get the idea to go DO it.

    You know what I would like to see? The huge outpouring of vounteerism on Angels' Night spread out onto other days of the year. Now that "Devil's Night" is pretty much dead and gone, it'd be great if so many people could come together to accomplish any number of things the city needs!

  • 6

    Dear Readers,

    As a residing freelance journalist I will be critical, fair and impartial to Time Magazine while they live here in Detroit from Aug. 2009 - Aug 2010. But, it begs to ask the question though, "Just what in the hell are Time Magazine staffers doing here in Detroit?" Lets me just back up here on an inventory of events just to be fair along with the suggestions/criticism I have to offer because, Time Magazine has really got me concerned and very angry at the quality of the body of their journalism. And, I'm sorry sensationalism isn't gong to cut the mustard here with any hawk-eyed shred of common sense from me or others locally.

    Steve Gray came here Aug 2009 with one blog and 81 comments, two television interviews during October 2009 with Channel 56, "Am I Right" with Nolan Finley & Debbie Dingle and Channel 7, Chuck Stokes, "Spotlight On The News." At the end of October 2009 two additional staffers of Time Magazine Ms Dybis and Mr Dawsey offered two blogs; one about a Canadian Lore of a Red Dwarf and Beer and the other blog that of "Land Bank" in Detroit and the newly appointed, Director, Deborah L. Younger.

    Granted Time Magazine had a sensational entrance with a grandstanding introduction plastering the cartoon effigy of Detroit all over their front cover, thus amplifying the city and state of Michigan as a poster child of an impoverished society in the nation and, downfall of housing foreclosures, unemployment, and joblessness. Iit remains to be seen where Time Magazine has NOT been least of all participating in the community of Metro Detroit. Now! If the intension is for Time Magazine staff is to stay held up in their house doing their interviews and stories then, I think they need to have a better game plan and, here is why?

    With the notable absence of Time Magazine I have been in attendance to the inaugural conference, "The Business of Plugging In 2009," Detroit MI. An informative means of identifying the progress of Hybrid Cars, Electrical Plug-in-Cars, reformation of the electrical grid and the provision of congressional bills and jobs it will provide both now and in the future. Notable attendees in paneled discussion were former Gov Potaki of New York, retired General Wesley Clark, Gov. Jennifer Granholm and William "Bill" Clay Ford of Ford Motor Company. Since the introduction of Steve Gray on the local media circuit I have not seen the ofference or invitation to freelance journalist to shadow or co-author with staffers on a scintilla of transparent news worthy commentary which, is contrary to that of realtime media moguls of Channels 2,4 &7 in Detroit. Well, how about staffers performing a workshop with local freelance journalists?

    Are the Time Magazine Staff creating good relations or just circumventing hyper-sensationalism to sell print and promote Time Magazine's status?

    Either way this is one very unhappy camper dissatisfied with the performance and quality of journalism from Time Magazine. During my time out purveying the black-tie circuits and conferences it remains to be seen as to what precisely is Time Magazine doing in Detroit? I sure as heck couldn't tell you even though I have my proverbial eye like a hawk watching, waiting and commenting. I know it's a dirty job but, somebody has to watch the press to keep things equitable and fair.

    Let me know what you think? I hope to interview Tom Barrow, candidate elect for Mayor of Detroit November 3, 2009 and I intend to ask current Mayor, Dave Bing, "In the shadows and disgrace of former Mayor, Kwame Kilpatrick," is the Mayoral seat of office for sale with the likes of; Peter Karmanos Jr owner of Compuware, Dan Gilbert of Quicken Loans, Matty Mouran owner of Ambassador Bridge in Detroit, Jim NIcholson owner of PV Chemicals, Rodger Penske owner of Penske Automotives and Formula 1 Car Racing in Detroit, Illitch Family of Detroit owners of Red Wing and Comerica Park, Partnership for Detroit LLC, a collage of Detroit owned businesses where entrepreneurs reside in the burbs. Look! Most of these folks gave Kwame and Carlita Kilpatrick a total of $290,000 to leave Detroit and go to Dallas,Texas. What isn't for sale in Detroit? It sure isn't the middle class or city employees being forced to negotiate lower wages to do more work.

    How do you rate Time Magazine? Have they lowered their presence to the public with goggle-eyed fear mongering tabloid gossip or are they still a cut above the rest in superior journalism? Is Dave Bing, Mayor of Detroit for sale? I can tell you that there is nothing more EVIL than Detroiter's present suffering in the this current economy. Let me now your opinion....

    Read more:

    • 6.1

      If you had an 'eye like a hawk' you would notice that two of the three people blogging here are locals, not brought in from afar by Time.

      If you were really that knowledgeable about all things Detroit you would know that the lore of Le Nain Rouge dates back to Cadillac's Detroit and is NOT Canadian. Within the last few years Mosaic even mounted a production about Le Nain Rouge and Detroit (are you familiar with the fine Detroit organization Mosaic?).

      If this is a typical example of your freelance journalism work, I'll stick with Time as long as they allow me to counterpoint stuff I view differently.

  • 7

    "Well, how about staffers performing a workshop with local freelance journalists?"

    In the middle of that massive comment, Missp50 totally hit on something I've wondered for some time. With the state of literacy and print media being what it is, why don't TIME bloggers go out into schools and help out with literacy and reading programs? Your opinions on Beer, the Nain Rouge, and other things generally known are nice, but if I can't read them I don't care.

    It only seems obvious as print media dies, that one major contributing factor to it is that kids can't read. Or at the very least, they don't get the choice to ignore print media. Why should I care what any media outlet has to write if they aren't helping more people be able to read it?

    • 7.1

      They are here as journalists, not teachers, not community activists. Why are you asking Time to do things the local community won't?

      And the things 'generally known' are 'generally known' to us, not the entirety of the nation, which is Time's market.

    • 7.2

      anounceofaction: "They are here as journalists"

      At least Ms. Dybis seems to think otherwise.

      In her "Is this Art" blog she claims that she loves blogging (over "reporting") because she "can be rude and argumentative and get away with it."

      That's not journalism, as far as I can tell.

      I'd love it if we knew exactly the purpose of the Time blog is. I've not seen a mission statement, only what seems like an exploitative-based statement of "One year, one city, endless opportunities."

      Opportunities for whom? To do what?

      As for asking Time to do things that communities won't, well, that brings into light an interesting question: Are they part of the community here, or aren't they?

      As for whether or not there are folks doing the type of literacy work with kids already in the city, I would hope you'd consider the work that InsideOut Literary Arts Project does *exactly* what I'm describing.

    • 7.3

      Ms. Dybis is a local former reporter on board as a blogger. Don't confuse blogging with being a print media or content writer in any 'journalistic' sense.

      The Time, Inc. staffers bearing journalistic burdens are those like Mr. Gray, whose byline appears beyond the blog.

    • 7.4

      I'm totally on board as far as making clear journalist vs. not, but at the same time, plastering "TIME MAGAZINE" all over everything kind of smells the same as any of the "Not designed to be a cure/treatment for any disease" tags hidden on health food looking products.

    • 7.5

      Personally, I miss good old-fashioned definition of journalism--facts and information that help people understand what's happening. This recent trend of "reporters becoming the story" is unsettling and shakes the foundations of the value of a free press. We all have opinions, or we are--believe it or not--capable of forming our own if we are given a balanced picture from those who are supposed to gather and deliver it.

      Blogging is a medium that requires injection of "point of view," or so we're told. Blech. And poppycock. How about if reporters leave "you" out of it and just give us the information????

    • 7.6

      Facts and information require people to think and reason, and hence don't sell the way sensationalism and rampant baseless speculation do. A sad but true state of affairs permeating all forms of media today.

  • 8

    Ok! Steve,

    Come out and "Report like a real male journalist" here in Detroit.

    "And so what about Devil's Night? Steve Gray! Can't you find anything else socially more intellectual and less well, was NOT was and destructful. Who are you? And What the HELL are you trying to write about? Ehh! What about "Angel's Night?" Where in the heck where you at "Business of Plugging In 2009 Inaugural Conference?" Why didn't you attend? What are you talking about let alone by being fair? Why are you not at black-tie events? "What EXACTLY is Steve Gray's agenda at Time Magazine?" And what kind of content are you in the heck reporting?

    So you think you and your staff can reside here in Detroit for a year and write any old " Ham and Eggs Pig Fodder/Tripe storey just for the heck of selling print at Time Magazine? You and the staffers at Time Magazine need to be monitored for transparent news worthy stories.

    Step up to the the plate and be held accountable for the lack-luster quality of goggle-eyed fear mongering tabloid gossip emanating in this city. Is this the reason why you came to Detroit? Don't waste your time here matey! Because you sure might end up being the news yourself let alone the laughing questionable stock of modern journalism. I would be tempted to lock you and Mitch Albom up in the proverbial police paddy wagon and anyone else who joins your blogging posse entourage should be held responsible.

    Just because you work for Time Magazine dosen't mean you are better than any of us freelance journalists or working reporters living in Metro Detroit.

    You need to give up some Aretha Franklin style R.E.S.P.E.C.T. towards local television and print media in Michigan. You deserve to get scowled at. Even if it's Devil's Night or Angel's Night or Whatever!

    Frankly, you're quality of journalism scares the heck out me although, I can't speak for everyone here but, folks don't be afraid to give Time Magazine a piece of your mind... Tell Steve and his staff what you think and don't hold anything back.

    Shooot! You deserve to get cussed out anyways.....

    "And by the way to the other local bloggers reading these Time Magazine Detroit Blog. I don't go out to schools because, I'm broke and unemployed for nearly 6 yrs. Money is something I don't have let alone constantly worrying where my next meal is comming from! Yes! Who gives a "Monkey's Whistle" about any Michigan or Canadian Lore about a Red Dwarf or Devil's Night for that matter? IThese are so abstract from the current status of the deplorable economic suffering of Michiganders let alone myself. I'm trying to bring out the best of journalism from Time Magazine and other local media outlets "What in the heck are you other bloggers trying to accomplish right here and right now in the good progress of Michigan?"

    missp50 Time Magazine Agenda in Detroit? Detroit Mayor,4Sale?

    • 8.1

      Broke and unemployed for nearly 6 years yet you claim to be a journalist? What's wrong with this picture?

      (crosspost to Detroit Embarrassment)

  • 9

    Is Steven Gray actually even living in Detroit? Or is he just diggin up old news on Detroit on google? This is something that peaked in the 80's. You could have written this from Shanghai and it'd be equally irrelevant.

    • 9.1

      How do you kill it in the national mindset without addressing the history and indicating the progress made, especially since the locals aren't ignoring it either?

  • 10

    Spamming the blogs on the Time Magazine website is just unprofessional to say the least. You really have not added to the blog at all and have come across as angry and bitter. Maybe just maybe if you would have added to the post in a way that was benificial I could see some support for your cause here, but I don't see that at all.

    In one post you say that you have interviewed or have been present at such and such events, then go on to say that you have been unemployed for the past 6 years, well are you currently a working journalist or not?

    So now that is established, blogs are not really a way to convey news in the traditional sense for the media at large. They are more like a group of friends just sitting down and talking about events, both past and present. Sometimes you may want to comment and other times maybe not.

    You mention "what are the Time staffers doing to help in Detroit". Why should they "help" Detroit? They are here to write not teach! If people can't read that is not the fault of Time or its writers, or for that matter any news media, it is the fault of the people, parents and schools of the city of Detroit and the people that live and run the city. Being that you say you are unemployed, I would say you have plenty of free time to "help" people learn to read.

    I would have to say that the average reader of time magazine has at the very least finished highschool and has gone to colledge too. I wish I could say the same for some of the readers of the other news agencys here in the state. What with their 6th grade writing and story telling abilities, mostly filled with venomous content for their readers, The comments left by the reads both filled with hate and jealousy much like both of your posts above are.

    This is the reason, the very reason why our state is a joke in the country, most of us can't see the big picture because we are blinded by our lack of understanding, bitterness and general hate for ourselves and our neighbors. One of the reasons why Devil/Angels night is such a news worty subject aroud here.

    I appaude Time for what they are doing here in Detroit. I hope that alot of good will come from it. But I also know that what ever good may come, right behind it will be some one like you to knock it down because of some miss guided notion that only people of Detroit are allowed to help them selves.

    Im sure Mr. Gray is very compentent as a journalist for TIme Magazine, he is employed by them after all, what did you say your employers name was again?

    • 10.1


      I own my own magazine. I'm also a professional photographer too. I'm scrutinized constantly for press credentials every year by NAIAS, Who's Who, Ford, GM, Chrysler, Daimler, On Wheels, American Lung Cancer Assoc., Crains, Partnership for Detroit, Political Campaigns, Philanthropy and for even one-on-one interviews with public figures and entrepreneurs. '

      I don't need to legitimize myself to the ideological type of POXY remarks you've emanated thus far.

      Incidentally, where is YOUR body of work in mass print, media and film? You just talk for the sake of talking here. You haven't added anything intrinsically valuable yourself in terms of 'prima facie' evidence in your commentary.

      Lord knows, I get up everyday and work with zero capital, zero financing with maximum networking capacity to create jobs for myself and others in my field. Journalism is a brutal profession mostly gratis in exchange for maybe instinctual property to propel you to the next situation. Journalism is about "Who know you and your work." And ETHICS.

      So, in answer to your question, "Who do I work for?"
      I work for nobody. Least of all you!

      Just remember, some people have a "Get out of jail free card." At least I have a "Get out of HELL free card" And I dare you to walk in my shoes in this brutal and unforgiving economic climate. Fearful everyday of Michigan's economic plight.

      Tis indeed survival of the fittest. And I thank god that I am able to survive even as an unpaid journalist in the most untraditional means of existing. I used to polish floors on my hands and knees so I know the truth is always in the shine.....

      And I want my colleagues in media including Time Magazine is to maintain writing and photographing with unbridled transparency in their work.

      Good luck!

    • 10.2

      Missp50 what magazine did you say you owned again?

  • 11

    I also don't see the point of having several TIME journalists come here and act as if Detroit is some kind of hardship post, being constantly surprised if there is an intellectual move made in Michigan. We have some of the best universities in the country, and lots of restaurants, theater, and good people who go day to day just doing our jobs.

    The problems as to why there is crime and poor HS graduation rated are subjects they don't really touch, because of being too politically correct. They haven't gone and lived with the 3-4th generation teenage-welfare mothers with whom I work, who feel that having lots and lots of babies to live off the government is great. That is the root cause of the crime and poverty. Thousands and thousands of babies being born and raised in Detroit with no more aspirations than to have more free babies or sell drugs. This is the giant problem in Detroit and all other large urban areas, and goes across racial lines, encompassing black, Hispanic and whites.

    There was lots of employment for years, and this mega group of people sucked off of Detroit., the state and the federal government The newly unemployed will be creative enough to make it, but this giant underclass is causing a great sucking noise from our taxes to their wanton selfish ways, and that is what undermines Detroit and the rest of the country, rural and urban. But TIME will never publish this story, they too much bleed for the "folks", without understanding how crafty these residents are about the free government ride. I have seen this thousands of times myself. It is outrageous and needs to be changed, otherwise our country is going to go completely downhill in many ways.

    • 11.1

      Wow! Have we all gone off topic, Ha ha ha ha!!!!

      As usual all kinds of concerns get interjected into a blog on "Devils Night" and the frivolity of it all.

      Grewupindetroit Is right about that problem, but what you missed is Time Magazine has not reported on the problem you describe, but no one will report on it as it will single people out. The problem you describe is not uncommon in a lot of impoverished areas across the world. So your areguement while it is valid, will never be reported on to the depth that you would desire it to be.

      Detroit is a hardship, record unemployment, foreclosures of property, poor schooling, murder, and political corruption just to name a few. I would consider that to be hardship on a grand scale. To think that a once thriving mecca such as Detroit could fall to its knees like it has, is due to more then baby makin' mommas suckin the system. in the same instance you could blame any number of tragic events, Devils/Angels night for instance and the histroy of it is legend, don't want to live downtown some one might burn your house down. Just one instance of an event that has made Detroit famous in a negative way.

      The real shame is that we all embrace it so much, come this time of year we almost get a sense of pride hopeing the fires will be bigger and spread farther to rid us of what really fears us. The aspect of knowing Detroit will rise form the ashes like a phoenix and once again fly and we wont be apart of it.

      Don't just blame Time Magazine, or the writers for doing what they are supposed to do, write about their experiences. Blame yourself, and your friends, and your family for not stepping up and doing what you should do what we all should do, help our city to grow great once again. Start shopping in Detroit, buy a house there if you want, live and demand that your city government workers live there. Demand that the streets get cleaned, and make sure that on Devils/Angels night next year you are watching that house across the street so that it does not get set on fire and your neighborhood says a safe haven not only for your children but for your neighbors too.

  • 12

    I would seriously suggest that one of the "reporters" spend a few months in one of the burned out area of Detroit, living the dream, and another spend a few months at WIC, FIA and other welfare office, and really getting to know the teen mothers with their designer nails ans boyfriends. Ask why it was so easy for them to get preggers with so many babies before age 18 years, and how it is possible to so easily live a life not paying taxes or working. Ask about all of the money they get that is NOT given to those who don't have babies and suck off of the welfare system, Medicaid, WIC, etc, etc etc. Ask why they have 5-7 babies, and just get more money for this. Figure out why they can't even take care of the housing they are given,wreck it, and why they have to spend their lives trying to get free stuff, without giving anything back except crime and the next generation of babies. This is the real story of Detroit, DC, large parts of NYC, Cleveland, etc. Even when there were jobs, these groups of people just took and took and only made babies and sold drugs and caused crime and bombed out looking buildings when others with more future moved away from the desolation. However, these problem groups take the crime with them. look at the stats. It's not the system, it's the people we enable to perpetuate it.

    The most frightening thing to me is that we now have a huge influx of poor immigrants who are also now doing the teenage pregnancy/welfare route in Detroit and elsewhere. This is really going to bankrupt this country. And now Darryl D will say, let them have babies and welfare, as he did before, it's not the poor it's the rich who are the ones causing trouble. Guess what, the rich pay taxes to let these welfare families rip us off, so how about doing this real story????

    • 12.1

      We could always castrate all males over the age of 16 and solve the problem. Would you like that?

  • 13


    First of all, this HAS been a story every year. True, it hasn't been a major problem for many years, but the number of fires in the city proper still increase every year on 10/30. So there's that. Lets not flog this poor guy for touching on that fact.

    Now, missp50, if you used appropriate punctuation in your posts I might find it easier to get behind your point of view. Well, probably not, but it might help you seem less insane.

    Can Detroiters ever be happy? We need the kind of attention that Time is bringing to our city. Will there be unflattering stories? Yes. Will there be stories about the amazing things happening in our city? Yes. Are the problems facing Detroit easy to sum up in 500 word blog posts? Of course not.

    To say that welfare mothers are the root of all of our problems is ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous. How about racism, institutionalized discrimination, an industry that hasn't been able to compete for years, and people that would rather bitch than get out there and DO something.

    I have an idea for you people out there. Instead of discussing what this city used to be with a major attitude of defeat, why don't you put your own personal plan of action into effect and make whatever difference you can. No matter how small, YOU can make a difference. This city is ours, and will still be ours long after this visiting reporter returns to his city, so lets begin a dialogue of positivity, innovation and change.

    If you don't believe in those things, maybe it's time for YOU to leave.

    • 13.1

      I get what you're saying, but just a point - I'm pretty sure there have been years during the Angels' Night efforts that the number of fires on 10/30 have been at or lower than the number of fires on an average night during the year.

      Honestly, after the little rash of fires in earlier October I was afraid some freak would go to work due to Time's high profile presence just so he could see his behavior get national notice.

  • 14

    Sounds like some jealousy with mispp50, you need to get a real life and take some grammar classes.

  • 15

    First of all, as to the comment about castrating males over 16 to prevent pregnancy, the teens I work with start having babies by age 14, so 16 would be a little late anyhow.

    As to the plan of action for preventing crime, etc in Detroit, i have put a tremendous effort into trying to understand and fix these problems. I have come to the conclusion that the inner city population is very selfish and cannot see beyond their own desire to get everything for free and give back nothing. In addition, they just want to feed their hormones. i see nothing endearing about teens having babies with other teens or with flashy older men.

    I would not live in downtown Detroit because I detest the culture, and think that the people who ave caused it are basically happy with it. I just am highly annoyed that my very high taxes pay to subsidize their selfish and crappy way of life there. Trillions of dollars later, the inner cities of this country still wallow in their own excrement, but can't even acknowledge it. There is a great divide in this country, and someone has to call in the chips. No one will call it. TIME just persists in producing the most superficial pieces about Detroit.

    • 15.1

      I hate to be the one to tell you this, but you are racist.

      You are generalizing to an embarrassing degree. Of course there are people taking advantage of the system. That happens everywhere, in every walk of life. Ever hear of White Collar Crime?

      Why don't we discuss an institution that will not let "those" people get ahead. Ahead? Sheesh, what am I saying? I mean the same. Our government will not allow them the SAME access.

      I bet you'll disagree with this, which only further strengthens my point. You see this solely as a social issue. It's not. It's much larger than that.

      These people that you speak of so carelessly have very little hope. Have you ever done the wrong things because you didn't know what else to do? I have. It's not good. It's a horrible place to be.

      Have some compassion.

      I really hate that it's you folks would have to work with. You're so judgmental and mean. To say that you "hate their culture" tells me you actually know nothing about the people who inhabit this amazing town.

  • 16

    I like the idea of Time posting their mission statement, which someone mentioned on one of the discussions here overnight. I mean, I doubt that somebody just said, hey, let's embed some reporters in a house in Detroit for a year, let them blog and see what happens -- oh, yeah, great idea, we'll throw a couple hundred thousand bucks behind that!

    Someone wrote up a proposal with a goal, an outcome, a mission, and it was considered and they decided to go with it. Hey, reporters -- can you post your mission statement?

    • 16.1

      I agree. There is clearly an agenda given the type of reporting that the TIME guys have dug up. From what I can gather, its to let Detroit be the rest of the countries whipping boy. Make every other city in this country feel ok during this recession because "hey, its not as bad as Detroit appears to be in TIME magazine". Seriously, this reporting has been so lop sided it does beg what the mission of this assignment is. Especially given the fact that there are so many real and relevant issues to be covered in Detroit, I find it particularly lazy that old issues like this remain at the top of their agenda. Its like TIME sat in a room and said, I heard Detroit really sucks, I read they have abandoned buildings, and something called Devils night, and murders. Lets have some go there and write about these things.

  • 17

    msj73, you are living in a fantasy world. The city is majority black. The power structure is almost entirely black. The elected officials are almost uniformly black. Contracts are awarded to black-owned firms. Where is this institutionalized racism you speak of?

    What on earth does white collar crime have to do with Detroit?

    Evidently, your view is that the problem is people being "mean." What a sophisticated worldview.

    Get out of downtown for a change, go to the neighborhoods, park your car and walk around and actually meet people and get an clue of what Detroit is really like.

    • 17.1

      I never said White Collar Crime had anything to do with the city of Detroit, I was simply proving a point that people take advantage of systems everywhere. Don't get it twisted.

      However, for anyone to say that racism in America has played no role in the making of this city is completely preposterous. It's quite frankly idiotic.

      I have, and continue to walk around the neighborhoods of this city. I live in it. I contribute in my silly little ways. I SEE the great things being done in all of our names (even you frightened suburbanites who claim this as your city when away for some sort of crazy street cred) I know the people.

      There is no fantasy about it. It IS bad. People DO take advantage. Politicians ARE crooked. No one is disputing all of this. But what now? Give up? Not me.

    • 17.2

      missj73 said...
      "(even you frightened suburbanites who claim this as your city when away for some sort of crazy street cred)"

      I never tell people that I am from Detroit or even the Detroit area. I don't like the look I get when I have said so in the past. It is usually a look of "oh you poor man, Do you need some money"

      Ha ha ha! just thought a little levity was needed. Back to Devils night, angels night, or just plain ole, "hey lets start a fire in that abandon house night. Lets just all agree that the city at large has problems that we can all see as causes to a bigger problem. And by reading all of the posts above we all see different issues that are a part of the bigger problem. Oh and by the way we are all racist in one way or another. And if you really want to be PC about life then we should just adopt the term Ignornantist, Because that really is the root of it all. Devils night is ignorant, haveing mass babies is ignorant, argueing about Time reporters is ignorant,Agueing that you have been unemployed for 6 years but you own a magazine is... well that is not ignorant that is just bitter in a way. (sorry missp50 I had to get a dig on you once more, I could not help my self, I tried to not do it. But it;s like a scab you know. Just gotta pick it.)
      The point of all of this reall is why don't replys format correctly into paragraphs. It really is irratating and just makes me want to blame Detroit for all of the problems in this blog not just Devils Night....
      :) Laugh a little it is good for you.

      Ps. Missp50 I an not a writer if you have not noticed, nor do I have a magazine tha I own. But I do have a body of work that I enjoy doing, and that body belongs to my Lover, I don't get paid for that either.

      Ha ha ha ha! I know I should stop.

  • 18

    First, I am a lifelong Detroiter. Another of your generalizations and assumptions proven wrong.

    I assume you are too, because you have the same mentality that's prevalent here - blame everyone else for the city's problems. It's always the racists, or the government, or the suburbanites. It's never the poor choices people make in their lives, the lack of education, the culture of underachievement. No, it's the suburbanites coming in and impregnating teenage girls, forcing kids to drop out of high school, keeping illiterates from attending the countless remedial and tutoring programs around town, and going house to house and causing them to look unrepaired and dilapidated.

    How about trying this - quit your whining about others being to blame and start holding people in the city to the same standard that people in the suburbs and in other cities hold themselves to? Nah, it's easier to moan on some internet forum and hold yourself up as somehow better.

    Detroit has had a culture of pointing the finger at everyone else while wallowing in its culture of nihilism. The results are apparent everywhere here.

  • 19

    The people who could change Detroit are right now just doing more to destroy it. The point someone made about the run-down houses is right. It doesn't take money to go pick up weeds Instead of crack, buy a cheap lawn mower at a yard sale or borrow a neighbor's. Until we all stop saying "oh the poor little helpless Detroiters, or Clevelanders, or Gary, Ind or Youngstown residents, etc etc etc, nothing wil change.

    I was the result of DPS, and had a good education there, despite large classes and a bad physical plant. That was because I did not come from a rotten culture. Again, I think the real story of Detroit and urban areas in general is not fluff pieces about new restaurants (nice publicity but TIME doesn't need to be here for that purpose.) It's looking at how to just cut the aid to these ridiculous people in the city who are feeding off our scarce taxes. Make them work for their money, like everyone else. Remember, these bottom feeders did the welfare game even when there were lots of jobs in the Rust Belt, so don't blame the economy now for them sucking off of us. As far as racism, it is all groups who do this. The system that rewards babies by life-long support is bankrupting America.

    I do feel that I cannot work well with these people, and am choosing to change locations, as I cannot enable this population of deadbeats anymore. I will still stay in the Detroit area, just not working with the deadbeats. No more lines of 15 years old mothers and 30 year old grandmothers for me to deal with!

  • 20

    [...] community’s program continues to this day: Many residents will sit on their front porches, watching for prospective arsonists. Wooden boards [...]

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