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Arts & Life

What You’re Telling Us About Detroit

Photo submitted by Steven Fisher
Stephen Fisher (right) on Hartwell in Detroit in 1962. He's messing around in his cousin's 1957 Thunderbird with friends from Mumford High School.

Changing Gears is asking you about the best and the worst of Detroit, and the factors that are shaping your views of the Motor City. We’ll keep updating throughout the week. Here’s a sample of the first responses.

Detroit is great city, it’s just that people tend to judge before getting to know it. It’s like an old car, it’s broken down, but you love it to death. -Kira Plotivrnkov, Warren, MI

Art deco grit -Garlin Gilchrist II, Washington, DC

What’s the coolest thing about Detroit?

The coolest thing about Detroit is what it used to represent. Detroit was the American Dream. Millions of people were able to go to college because of the salary and benefits that the big three provided for their parents and grandparents.

When I am away from home and I hear someone ignorantly speaking about Detroit, I feel like someone is disrespecting a family member and I always make sure to chime in and talk about all the great things that this area offers. Joe Egan, Royal Oak, MI

It’s attitude. The city and its people genuinely seem to have a sense of community and pride in rebuilding Detroit. The willingness to learn from mistakes and try new civic ideas is appealing. -Michael McAfee, Austin, TX

What’s the worst thing about Detroit?

The deplorable attitude toward education and the poverty, the crime, and the racial mistrust that it breeds. The stigma of political corruption. Jeffrey Poling, Troy, MI

Apathy and lack of commitment. Dependence on social programs and lack of pride. -Deborah Godfrey, Brighton, MI

Currently, Chrysler transmissions, the Pistons and the months between January and April. -Tom Hein, Hollywood, CA

Describe Detroit in 2020.

We did it y’all! -J. Andrews, New York, NY

Did anything happen in the last year to change your impression of Detroit?

Detroit has always had a place in my heart, but in the last year I have really been seeing how many people care about saving this city, I saw a “D” drop on New Years at Campus Martius for the first time, I watched the live feed of the MPC from start to finish, heart beating with hope and excitement for the Detroit yet to come, I have even seen the beginning of renovating Michigan Central Station and most of all I have seen a city and it’s people refuse to give up. Detroit will be cool again, it just won’t come easy. -Mallory Miller, St. Clair Shores, MI

Before I visited Detroit I frankly was expecting ‘Robo-Cop.’ But as soon as I got there every person I talked to was friendly and polite. I was inspired by the fighting spirit the city had. While many people had left those that stayed were committed to the rebirth of Detroit. -Adam Black, Las Cruces, NM

Be sure to take our survey about Detroit. We’ll keep it open this week. And come back for more of our coverage of Transformation Detroit.

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