Inequality is built into the infrastructure of Atlanta Georgia. Today, many people wouldn’t even notice this. However, this doesn’t only happen in Georgia. When referencing events in history, we can reach a cause for the deliberate racial discrimination within urban planning. Lawful segregation was commonplace for cities like Atlanta, so the people of the city were already living in the separate neighborhoods where urban planners preferred they remained. They were segregated majorly by white and black into neighborhoods that rarely mixed. There was little to no leakage between these neighborhoods due to social and economic pressures. So Interstate 20, the line cast between these two areas, was a way to make sure that these separations were more permanent within the city’s urban planning. By installing highways along these separation lines, it works as a physical way to keep black people in their place, which cements inequality into the city’s foundation.

The sociological impacts of these segregated living spaces greatly rely on what people think of these different areas. The separated spaces make the economic difference apparent, with white neighborhoods appearing more well kept, and black neighborhoods coming off more run down. This reinforces social stratification as it categorizes people of different races into rankings of who has more or less money, with white people on top and black people on the bottom based upon how well kept or updated an area is. Seeing the difference in “quality of life” between the neighborhoods feeds into this idea that “bad” neighborhoods, or more poor neighborhoods, are generally occupied by African Americans. This can also be said for “better” neighborhoods, which is commonly associated with white people or people with more money in general. This exemplifies the foundational inequities as the areas showcase a major wage gap between the areas as well as a gap in funding.

Both of these ideas tie into the political aspect of redlining, which is the practice of reducing the amount of funding an area can receive if it is considered poor or “risky”. This ties into the sociological perspective of the separation of the two neighborhoods as people view more poor areas as more risky and less valuable from a funding perspective. This is the most prominent form of inequality today because it can be framed as an economic pursuit when only marginalized people will live in these “risky” areas. Dually, looking from the historical perspective, we can see that these people were pushed into these areas and kept there in poverty. Once they couldn’t move, they installed Interstate 20 to truly keep them in these impoverished areas. So successfully excusing redling as anything less than a more subtle form of segregation is indicative of how ingrained these things are. These inequalities in Atlanta, Georgia are truly embedded into the concrete.

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Terrel
April 5, 2024 7:24 pm

Leah,
“These inequalities in Atlanta, Georgia are truly embedded into the concrete.”
I was just taken away by this entire essay. I highlighted this quote because I just love how you connected everything to your title. Such a simple title with an intriguing and detailed explanation. I love how insightfully you spoke, you could give this writing to anyone and they would walk away with new knowledge. Awesome work.

Ava
Ava
April 5, 2024 1:09 pm

Leah I really like the title and photo. i like that you brought up redlining and its connection to this topic and how they avoided funding areas they considered risky it really shows their disregard for certain communities and the elevation of them.

Julianna
April 5, 2024 1:07 pm

The photo and the title are so much different than the other ones, I like the way that your mind things differently. Your writing doesn’t only tell us what is going on, but it does so in a powerful way. I like the way that you don’t have to use your own opinions and/or thoughts on the matter because your writing gets the point across without them.

Anaiya
April 5, 2024 12:04 am

Your story powerfully exposes the enduring legacy of systemic inequalities in Atlanta’s urban planning. By combining historical, sociological, and political dimensions, you illustrate how infrastructure like Interstate 20 perpetuates segregation and cements inequality within the city’s foundation.

Aaron
April 4, 2024 2:57 pm

Leah, I like your inclusion of the economic effects that come with the separation of neighborhoods and the factor of hidden segregation. I wonder if you have any ideas as to what can be done to change this issue? I was very attracted to the cover image of your post as it seems very deep and up to a viewer’s interpretation as to what it could mean.

Bobbie
April 4, 2024 12:54 pm

I was taken away by how well your photo and title go together, very nice. I think the text is very informational and could use some personal thoughts and opinions. Regardless, your writing shows that you know what you are talking about and is very thorough.

Jenna
April 3, 2024 4:24 pm

Leah your title is what drew me to your comment. It is so simple but says so much at the same time. I think it was really perceptive of you to connect the article to redlining, I had made this same analysis. This would feel even deeper, and you found some way to make this article and experience connect to you. How did you feel when writing this comment? Have you ever observed these events? Other than that great job, you really found a way to make your claim and purpose clear.

Rymere
April 3, 2024 2:06 pm

segregation shouldn’t be a thing anymore man

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