UnGentrification: An Actually Simple Thought for My Allies

FB July 2018-03.png

In the last 48 hours in Richmond, VA, a man you may have never heard of before, but whose investments will impact the everyday lives of whole communities, played himself in a major way.

He attacked one of the most authentically community-minded folks in our area, and in doing so revealed that he does not know or care about the community he himself claims to speak in the interest of.

I’m not here to drag that man. It’s not worth my time. He’s one of many doing similar work not only in Richmond, VA but in cities like it across the United States.

What I’m here to do is say this:

If it is possible to strategically use the purchasing of property to increase one’s financial gain, then it is possible to strategically use the purchasing of property to increase an existing community’s present wellbeing and future sustainability.

So here’s a radical thought. Actually, no. It's a simple thought.

What if folks (white and otherwise) with the means to do so, starting purchasing property in under-resourced neighborhoods — not to flip those properties — but to do something with them that would have current and future positive impacts on the neighbors surrounding?

What if this was a movement? What would it be called? What would it look like? What could it do? What could it grow?

I ask this genuinely. I don’t know what this would look like. But I’d like to.

I ask this knowing that there’s a couple in my neighborhood who has already done this. They have strategically bought property in order to prevent developers from purchasing those properties.   

I ask this thinking, This shouldn’t even be close to a radical thought.

And we can do this.

#UnGentrification #PeopleOverProfit

If you want to play your part in undermining development that does not care about the community, here's an article with some great ideas. Thanks to @studentsofhistory for sharing with me on Insta.