In Raleigh, many of us like to think we live a million miles away from the racial inequality that's led to violence in places like Baltimore, Ferguson, Charleston, and even Durham and Chapel Hill.
We're not racist here; our rebel-flag waving lesser-halves are confined to Johnston County, crawling out
inevitably for a Kid Rock concert, or blowing into downtown for the weekend to destroy
our sidewalks and parking decks.
The cop killings, the riots, the hate crimes and the mass shootings of those other cities won't befall us, because we don't have those problems in Raleigh. Or they're not as bad. Or something.
That’s why, when this happens:
Women of the Confederacy Monument on the NC Capitol Grounds facing Morgan Street defaced
The city’s on it real quick:
lest the facade be shattered.
But like the defaced Women of the Confederacy monument—and the message
on the Lincoln building at the corner of East Hargett and South Bloodworth Streets, and the vandalism
of a Person Street construction site and a vacant Hillsborough Street building— remind us, Raleigh’s not above, or immune to, racial inequality and injustice, any more than any other American city.
We didn't magically bypass it on our journey towards becoming "the Best city for Everything."
Raleigh may do a better job of hiding inequality, tucking it into the outskirts of downtown, into the pockets of the neighborhoods of Southeast Raleigh, or spreading it like jelly up and down Capital Boulevard. But it's here, and it's something the city, as it grows, needs to reckon with.