A Case Study in Educational Inequality: The Detroit Public School System 1963-1967
MetadataShow full item record
The study of the riots became important because it exposed many of the racial inequalities in northern cities that exist to this day. Several studies after the riot revealed what had been obvious to many; the typical rioter was a single male African- American between the ages of 18 and 24. Thus attention was focused on police-community relations, housing, employment discrimination, poverty and the wage gap because these were areas which scholars identified as the causes of the disillusionment of African-Americans with society in the late 1960's. One of the most severe areas of inequality, however, occurred in the area of education. While much attention is focused in history books on educational equality and desegregation in the South, the North was often just as tumultuous. Education was a key factor in the perpetuation of inequality in northern cities. As Detroit juvenile court judge James H. Lincoln, a judge who participated in the sentencing of juveniles during the riot, pointed out: "The most effective way to reduce race problems is not to treat these problems as race problems but to effect basic changes in the home and schools of millions of children of all races." For Lincoln the riot represented a cry of African-Americans for equality and he believed that problems of equality and poverty were directly linked with educational attainment.