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The 'Inner City' Reality Is Complicated

It’s not easy, but we need to accept that one candidate’s dark vision of American cities holds certain truths.
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Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

Last week, mayors from Kansas City, New Orleans, Dayton, Ohio, and Pittsburgh held a press call where they went on the offensive about the dystopian “inner-city” narratives of Donald Trump, who often speaks of cities in Third World-terms and claims that the African Americans who live in them are mostly or completely job-less and education-less.

“It’s really astounding to listen to an individual who is so dangerously ignorant about what is happening on streets of America, particularly in American cities,” said New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu on the call. “It strikes me that Trump is just wrong about the facts, about his perception, about reality, and consequently he can’t help but be anything but wrong about how federal, state and local governments can come together, which is the important part.”