Tuesday, October 21, 2008


I love this blog, Sweet Juniper!, the writing is so well done and the pictures are poignant without being cliche. Most of the posts are by a stay at home dad who takes his two children around the inner city of Detroit. His pictures of the decay and destruction are overwhelming and discouraging especially in contrast to his photogenic and innocent children.

Today's post (Oct. 21st, 2008), "Open Campus" is of an abandoned elementary school, a Norman Rockwell-esque building left to the neighborhood just over a year ago. The amount of destruction and disregard for the history and sustainability of the building is sickening. The accompanying post is just as heart-wrenching.

My town has an elementary school which stands empty and is the topic of much discussion... what will happen to the building? The rock gym? The WWII memorial library? The playground? It's a neighborhood school which I attended and I hope to see it be used for a greater purpose. The school board seems unwilling to recognize the importance of the building and it's future, much like the school board in Detroit.

I recognize there are greater problems facing our nation but aren't those problems a product of choices? Choices which placed importance on segregation and the newest and latest rather than preserving, repairing and restoring what came before? How do we shift the way of thinking so that it's not a always a case of bulldozing and destruction? If these photos don't frighten you about the direction of our country, I'm not sure what will...

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