”That’s how life goes along the poverty line in car-centric cities like Dallas, whose 20th-century growth birthed highways that became developmental skeletons for suburbs where the middle class have fled for decades. Left behind is an urban core with housing and socioeconomic problems — and infrastructure built for cars that many poor people can’t afford.”
Reminicisent of other encounters with what it’s like to get to work in the sprawl, a feature from the Dallas News follows a worker to work. And it ain’t easy.
Stemming poverty in Dallas requires rethinking mobility
image: Broken Piggy Bank via Flickr/CC
One of our interns was riding their bike in a suburban area last spring and scored this virtually unused, clean-as-a-whistle, one-of-a-kind wooden horse – from a garbage pile! We made sure it joined a life list of items found thusly and passed on to urchins and unfortunates. Each time we hear about, or, better yet, participate in one of these little reversals of the waste/consumer ethos it gladdens our hearts here at suburban-poverty.com and gives us hope. It also reminds us of Texas academic Jeff Ferrell and his book (and blog) Empire of Scrounge.
Mr. Ferrell was faced with a lull in his career as a sociologist/criminologist and took to dumpster diving and trash picking on a bike to keep his observation and analytical skills sharp, save money and find cool shit. Empire of Scrounge is the title of the book that came out of the first part of Mr Ferrell’s adventures and the blog serves to update his ongoing adventures. Great stuff, well reccomended to our own readership when we consider the venue at hand. Dallas-Fort Worth is possibly one of this continent’s most serious examples of sprawled, super-suburbanization. It’s population density is only about half that of the Greater Toronto Area, for example.
Often, we are dismissed (sometimes even by ourselves) as doomer wannabes full of pessimism 0with little to offer in the way of solutions. Well, the editor hasn’t gotten his social services worker diploma just yet so this kind of practical, hands-on, exploratory, two-wheeled excellence will have to do for now. Links below, and seriously, have a safe, prosperous, resiliency-enhancing 2012.
Empire of Scrounge
Trespass, Trash & Train