My first Atlantic Cities piece…

…is up. I’m not in love with the title, which I didn’t choose, but c’est la vie. But you should read it. Excerpt:

As Ta-Nehisi Coates has written, the ghetto is public policy. So, to an amazing extent, is gentrification, which is really only another face of the ghetto. If the market is amoral, casting aside Darwinian losers without regard for human dignity, then the legacy of urban governance in postwar America is deeply immoral, a targeted annihilation and segregation of any and all people — blacks, Appalachians, immigrants, the poor of any color or language — who happened to be of the wrong crowd. Gentrification on the scale we see it today would be nearly impossible without help from exclusionary zoning laws; nor is it clear what would have happened to the major American downtowns around which gentrification now orbits without the government removing hundreds of thousands of undesirables during urban renewal.

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