I grew up in a southern ghetto and in my teens we moved to an urban ghetto. The two had similarities and stark difference. In 1987 the one I went to, Newark, NJ embraced ghetto existence where the one I left, Greensboro, NC didn’t. It puzzled me that living in the ghetto could be a source of community identity and alligence. Where I came from we wanted out of our ghettos.
Examination of the history of northern ghettos showed a patern of exodus from the ghettos by the original tenants, European immigrants who live there before black people took their places. They had no desire to stay there yet blacks claimed the corners, the atmosphere, the life in the ghetto as “keeping it real”. Why? Is it making the best of a bad situation? I can only speculate since I didn’t feel the same way but I believe it was because black people want so desperately to own a piece of Americana that we will take what no one else wants as long as we can say it is ours. If that’s true it’s an indication that for all our efforts the American dream is “just” a dream for those who think the ghettos of America is where they belong. #ghettolife, #nyc, #democratic, #republican, #America, #Africanamerican, #americandream, #hiphop, #rap