Frozen Tropics mentioned it first. Sankofa Video and Books up on Georgia Avenue will be ‘exploring’ the issue of gentrification this week. According to them:
The panel discussions will allow the community to thoroughly examine the implications of gentrification, gentrification and racism, the institutionalized gentrification, the economic implication of gentrification, the implication of culture gentrification, the appropriation of African American cultural icons for the benefits of the ‘gentrifiers’, and the following questions will be addressed:
Have they come to live with us or displace us?
Who owns the planet?
Gentrification: Latest stage of colonial power – or – it’s relationship to colonialism?
I see a bunch of loaded questions and statements. Yes, the word gentrification is loaded, but you can additionally pack it with more explosives and how you pair it with other loaded statements.
I’m going to take a wild guess and say the answer to question one will be displacement. Maybe the idea of living with people you’re implying are colonial oppressors may be batted around for a minute. But seriously, colonialist oppressor is not a nice title and you damage your radical whatever cred by coddling ‘those people’. Does one become a colonial oppresser by virtue of simply living east of 16th St NW? Is this an opportunity to rail against the Fair Housing Act, which allows people to legally live wherever the heck they want.
Here’s a question, is the ideal located in places in DC (parts of NE & SE) where gentrification is not occurring and probably will never even bubble slightly in the next decade or two?