Redlining and Racial Terrorism
The TOPS Was a Hard-won Oasis in a Food Desert. That Made it a Target.
To be clear, the responsibility for the brutal act of racial terrorism at TOPS falls squarely on the shoulders of the shooter. It seems clear that he acting in support of the toxic “Great Replacement” conspiracy with its origins in White Supremacy.
If we look closer, however, we can see that the placement of the Jefferson Avenue TOPS was the legacy of generations of “redlining,” or preventing access to mortgage loans to generations of African Americans. This government policy prevented most African Americans from homeownership and the ability to build intergenerational wealth.
Twenty years ago the Jefferson Avenue TOPS opened only after long efforts to provide an oasis in the “food desert” created by concentrated poverty. Sadly, it was this hard-won solution to food insecurity that made our neighbors the target of a sadistic act of mass murder.
To overcome racial inequality we must confront our history.