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On 50th Anniversary Of Riot, Columnist Says 'Detroit Is Not Dead'

One of the most profound events in Michigan's history is the Detroit riot of 1967. I was 16 years old on that day in July. My brother and I were on our way to visit our cousins three blocks from where the riot began.

Detroit, like many urban areas in the 1960s, was a place of racial tension and social unrest. The African-American community had trouble finding jobs and housing, and faced harassment from Detroit’s police force, which was 95 percent white.

On this edition of In Black America, I speak with Rochelle Riley, a columnist with the Detroit Free Press, about how the Motor City has moved on 50 years after the riot.

John L. Hanson is the producer and host of the nationally syndicated radio series In Black America. It’s heard on home station KUT at 10 p.m. Tuesdays and 6:30 a.m. Sundays — and weekly on close to 20 stations across the country. The weekly podcast of IBA, the only nationally broadcast Black-oriented public affairs radio program, is one of KUT’s most popular podcasts.