Nowadays, the unprecedented growth and rapid development in many aspects in the “Bull City” is a veil covering the events inside the region. The attractive exterior of streets and private territories in the dominant areas, the gentrified landscape, and a large amount of vegetation create a kind of illusion of deception, hiding the underside of the currents problems. Several residents still experience many problems associated with oppression and neglect of certain national minorities and social groups. Racial inequality among the population of Durham is one of the topical issues of modern American society, the origins of which are the disparaging attitude, prejudices of the management towards “specific people”.
Some people remember that the 30s of the last century are the beginnings of poverty, inequality, and discrimination in Durham, North Carolina. The complex change in the urban environment due to the relocation of wealthy citizens to once “poor” areas has generated several racial prejudices, injustice towards people of particular skin color in North Carolina. In fact, the gentrification process and the attempt to rank and compare districts and their residents on the principle of “from the worst to the best” has given rise to many myths and misconceptions. The authorities of Durham still take some measures to “clear” slums, thereby oppressing the “poor and disadvantaged” citizens living in less prosperous areas.
To this day, there is a tendency in Durham to disrespect black people, treating them as a class of level “C.” The deprivation and subjective perception of the material well-being of the “lower stratum of the population” continue to gain momentum. The “underprivileged” are deprived not only of landscaping their districts but even houses and real estate. Affluent areas of “Class A,” and less affluent places still suffer from a lack of tree canopies and an improved ecosystem (De Marco & Hunt, 2018). Actually, in predominantly “black” areas, trees cover only 10% of the territory, which is discrimination and humiliation of a particular group of people.
Businesses owned by blacks, as a rule, either close down, leaving only boarded-up boards on the windows or are displaced to less respectable areas. Some people are entirely left without a roof over their heads, without receiving any proper social support. Moreover, the overwhelming number of those evicted are African-Americans who were pressured from the outside, mistreated, and forced to leave real estate on “kind” terms. A community organizer once said that “developers in Durham are often well-meaning in their intent to revitalize parts of the city, but they aren’t working with a racial equity lens (De Marco & Hunt, 2018).” The government still “add fuel to the fire,” thereby further aggravating internal conflicts.
It is worth noting that the Durham government cares about the city’s infrastructure and human capital in general. To date, several programs have been developed aimed at preserving justice and equal treatment for each resident. Life here is gradually getting better, and more and more people with low incomes are provided with housing and work. However, it will take some more time to eradicate any signs of poverty and social inequality that still exist today and take measures to bring cultural identity to the fore. Despite any transformations, as it was supposed to be for the better, history remembers and knows all the internal negative moments and adverse consequences for most indigenous black people. The “initiative” of the federal and regional governments to sort things out often leads to such measures such producing gentrification and “clearing the way for the best of the best,” displacing blacks as the category of “class C” citizens.
De Marco, A., & Hunt, H. (2018). Racial inequality, poverty and gentrification in Durham, North Carolina. North Carolina Poverty Research Fund. Web.