Amber Arellano says it better than I ever could in today’s Detroit News.
“It’s tough for some folks to understand that many of us want to be here [in Detroit]. We didn’t end up here by inertia or lack of vision or better options. We’re educated and mobile; we can live anywhere. We choose to stay — or to return.”
“We return because we love the people and the culture. We stay because we’re proud of our roots, of who we are. We’re not naïve about this region’s daunting challenges; we’re choosing to tackle them. We’re committed to our families and communities.”I’ve been trying to reach out to Detroiters to get a feel for the mood in the city right now and I just love this column.
I get this all the time from my East Coast/West Coast/International friends. I actually get unreasonably upset when people trash Ohio. I really feel like this place is part of me. It’s who I am.
I don’t need 340 sunny days a year. I need people who share my sensibilities. I need a place where class divisions aren’t insurmountable, where you don’t have to be in finance or medicine to afford a home. This is where my family has thrived for generations and it has everything I need and more.
This article was written as a preview to an event being held by Great Lakes Urban Exchange Thursday.
The nonprofit group supporting 20 and 30-somethings from the Great Lakes region is asking young people what it will take to make them stay in Detroit. “I Will Stay If,” is being held at 7 p.m. Thursday at The Bureau of Urban Living, 460 W. Canfield Street in Detroit.
It’s not enough to simply feel devoted to Detroit, says GLUE executive Director Sarah Surpicki. Detroit needs fresh ideas and an economic development plan that can sustain the city’s population.
“There is such a consensus among twenty- and thirty-somethings . . . to take this time of crisis as an opportunity to create a city and region that is sustainable,” she says.
If you are in the area, stop by. Share your vision for the bright future of your home city.