, 13 tweets, 13 min read Read on Twitter
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu #thread When I started the program, I had just moved to Manalapan. On many mornings, I would wake up before 5am to pick vegetables for my family and church. It is hard to believe, but agricultural work was a major part of my community's life in the early 1980s. /1
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu I attended @ranneyschool, so I saw that other families did not do what we did every day. I was also aware of how much my family relied on civil and military service to make ends meet. /2
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool Being black in western Monmouth County, there was an assumption that we were poor, had always been poor, and would likely always be poor. Access to the #BlackBrainBelt from Red Bank to Belmar changed those ideas. /3
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool PAC was a product of these technicians and scientists recognizing the unique opportunity they could offer their children by opening up access to #MonmouthUniversity. /4
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool Following in the footsteps of #DrWalterMcAfee, they offered classes in advanced mathematics and computer science that even my private school didn't offer. More importantly, I attended alongside dozens of students who shared the experiences of racial segregation with me. /5
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool By 1990, their work enabled me to study with Otty Nxumalo, one of Nelson Mandela's Directors-General, who was in exile prior to the fall of the apartheid regime. /6
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool Over the next two decades, systemic disinvestment in the public sector decimated nearly every aspect of the social support network I enjoyed. #pathtofreedom #suburbanerasure /7
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool Simultaneously, the emphasis on private sector financial growth eliminated the limited access to capital that initiatives like PAC had enjoyed. /8
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool Once I understood globalization and macroeconomic theory, I came back to #MonmouthUniversity to teach it to students and families whose chances to reach the middle class declined every day. /9
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool The #MiddleClassNJ series from @AsburyParkPress gives us a chance to look clearly at the policy choices we have made as a nation (and a world). Since the 2017 tax law passed, we have embraced a system that punishes middle class families. /10
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool @AsburyParkPress Over the next two years, we need to focus on the details of how the global economy works. I've come a long way from picking potatoes at 4:30am, but I'm still planting seeds in hopes for a new harvest of justice and equity. /11
@MUschoolofEduca @monmouthu @ranneyschool @AsburyParkPress My last four books -- #AmericanEconomy, #IndustrialSegregation, #PlanningFutureCities, & #CitiesImagined -- provide many academic resources for these conversations. Let's get together and mobilize local communities to create equity for all people in 2021. /endthread
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