Detroit Free Press columnist Rochelle Riley in her article, “Small, Individual Projects Won't Fix Detroit, a Collaborative, Integrated Approach Will,” recounts that Detroit city is not likely to fail due to people not working hard. Riley’s purpose is to put across the idea that the best and brightest residents should work together to solve issues and formulate policies for success. She emphasizes by giving a vivid example that the individuals attached to Detroit should work close enough and intertwined like the DNA to prevent their separation at any cost (Riley, 2012). She uses this simile in her explanation to stress the level of unity that individuals should attain. The columnist adopts a motivational tone to enlighten individuals that success can be managed through unity and in the same case capture her readers’ attention.
This article analyses the need of people to work as one to facilitate the success of Detroit. Individuals are challenged to identify the specific areas they can fix rather than spending time thinking what they can tackle. This article supports the complete re-run and renovation of facilities rather than taking several minute steps to achieve change. Great support is given to the renovation of the Cobo Center, and the author states that this was supposed to have been a foundation of putting efforts and refurbishing the entire city. Riley highlights the issue of identification of opportunities and the ways of seeing a possibility in all the endeavors of having a better society.
The logos, or the major claim, of the article is the fact that the population of Detroit is decreasing probably due to the fact that individuals are not holding on together. The main reason for this is the non-development of the city. The city dwellers are also not open-minded and are not ready for embracing change and new opportunities. The people of the city are also reluctant in taking the initiative of bringing the others together. Similarly, the individuals in Detroit do not see any possibility in the activities ahead. More often, not many people tend to see impossibilities rather than finding a way of maneuvering to attain success and make things done.
Riley, for instance, recounts about Bernard Parker, the Wayne county commissioner, who narrates an incidence where the locals never showed any interest in having a production facility set up in the area. The company wanted to produce automobile parts in the facility and thus required the assistance of the residents in attaining a 6-acre piece of land to set up the facility (Riley, 2012). However, Parker recalls people in the city claiming that there was not enough land for the facility. This is a saddening incidence since the facility would benefit people in the city by revenue provision and more so by employment opportunities. Such an incidence is a major setback to the non-development in the region of Wayne County and Detroit. If the people of the city really wanted change and development, they should have joined forces and worked hard enough to find land for the production facility company.
Parker as an expert in his own field enhances his credibility by declining to give the name of the company that wanted to set up a production facility in Detroit. He clearly states that the negotiations with the company were confidential, and thus disclosing the name will be a breach of their agreement. The main loss is realized when the company finally was established in another state, where people were more than willing to gain from its proceeds. Parker addresses the entire community and predominantly the politicians on the need to come together as one. He expounds that the society at large in the entire region should not let polarization hinder them from making progress. He also argues that even if Detroit is going through financial setbacks, Wayne County is not better off as it is also lugging behind in the pool of financial hiccups.
Riley displays emotions in her article particularly in the “no holistic” section where she describes Detroit and southeast Michigan as biting off more than they are be able to chew and in the same instance dinning in different rooms (Riley, 2012). She emphasizes that people of the city should have taken the renovation of the Cobo Center as a new rule and a way forward for the refurbishing of the entire city. She however argues further in astonishment of how the people are not ready for the complete change of the entire city.
The columnist analyses the observations by Kurt Metzger, a demographer whose main point of view is the fact that the people of Detroit are data driven. Metzger draws his conclusion on the Data Driven Detroit by having various talks with different groups of people concerning the challenges facing Detroit. The demographer is not convinced with the topic- and program-specific philanthropic funding. He emphasizes that for any positive change to be observed in a community, multiple issues have to be attacked at the same time. Some of these issues include transportation, housing, education, crime, recreational services and other interrelated issues (Riley, 2012). This implies that no big impact can be felt in any city or neighborhood by just dealing with a single issue. A holistic approach is the best solution and the most suitable way forward.
One of the logical fallacies in the column is identified in the “sounds impossible? Not really” section. The fallacy is specifically identified where the article argues that individuals should ask themselves where jobs or businesses should come up before the first craving to have them put in place. Another fallacy stresses that a large company can only be built in an available big space at some place in the city. This company according to the article should be located in a good neighborhood with good schools, ready personnel and transportation for its employees.
These fallacies in one way or the other weakens Riley’s argument. If these fallacies are followed to the letter, individuals will not work to make the environment a better place but instead will observe the best place to develop it further. Riley argues that people of the city should work together to improve every aspect of Detroit in spite of the fallacies put across the pot that a new large company cannot be set up in an environment that is not good enough. The fallacies also overlook the issues raised in the article concerning creating a space of land for any prospective company rather than just concluding there is no enough land. It is the responsibility of the society to work together and create space, good schools, reliable transportation and a safe neighborhood. The purpose of this is to allow further developments and additionally facilitate the setting up of new large prospective companies that can bring immense economic development.
There are several connections in ideas of Riley’s article and other texts. An article “How Many Ruins Can We Fix if We Actually Work Together,” by J.A Staes is very much connected with Riley’s articles. The main idea of the two texts is to emphasize unity as the core driving force of development and success. A press conference held to announce the addition of Milliken State Park that is earning the city of Detroit multi-million dollars also addressed the impact of working together. The theme of the conference was cooperation and was attended by the city, state and Detroit Riverfront Conservancy representatives (Staes, 2012). The Governor, Rick Snyder, clearly urged the people to observe the current state of things and keep that image to compare with the future anticipated look. The future image would confirm to them the power held by working together, and it would in turn reinvent Michigan and also give an opportunity for the reinvention of Detroit.
According to a letter by Chris Allen, the CEO of Detroit Wayne County Health Authority, he echoes the words of Riley thus showing much connection with his letter. The letter that is in the article “Only through Teamwork can Detroit Rebuild’’ narrates of the much needed effective collaboration in the health sector. The health resources linked by the Detroit Wayne County Health Authority are very useful as they particularly benefit the underinsured and the uninsured in the County. Certain coalitions, such as the primary care provider’s collaboration, health system executives, Voices of Detroit Initiative and the Greater Detroit Area Health Council collaborations, are the possible avenues for change and improvement of the community’s health as well as realizing health equity (Allen, 2012). Though the development of productive relationship in the health sector is also hard, standing by Riley’s argument that Detroit will only stand if people work together will remain to be the driving force.
An article by Laura Mirviss, “Rebuilding Detroit Piece by Piece” also connects with Riley’s article in improving Detroit. The key player in this article is Mayor Dave Bing, a former basketball legend who initiated the project Detroit Works with an aim of making Detroit a better place. The project brings together private investors such as Kresge Foundation and a team of planners, economists, engineers and designers. This project engages in activities such the provision of job training to adults, supporting children academically and offering business start-up capital to small-scale entrepreneurs (Mirviss, 2012). These projects go hand in hand with Riley’s article of the fact that if a city is to be changed, an all round change is the best alternative.
It is thus justifiable to conclude that working hard is not the solution in making Detroit a success; working together as one is the way forward. If any initiative in Detroit is bound to succeed, people should establish an integrated approach in their endeavors. The good housekeeping basics in Detroit should be tackled in one accord by both public and private sectors. In order for the entire region to secure a bright future, it is very critical that it works together in its social, economic and environmental reforms. Detroit can thus be fixed not by small individual projects but by the unity of the whole community, private organizations and government organizations.