Following Flint’s Failures: It’s been over 5 years since people first learned about Flint, but not only are there cities with it worse, one predominantly black city has it worse while a white town 8 minutes away is perfectly fine.
My name is Nico Oberholtzer, and I am a Computer Science Major studying environmental science at New Jersey Institute of Technology. As someone interested in cybersecurity, people explicitly not learning from others’ mistakes and even trying to take advantage of others is exactly the opposite of what I want to see.
By now, I don’t believe there is a single person who hasn’t heard the name of Flint, Michigan, even if only in passing. The water crisis there was very well known, and lasted for a while, to the point where even now there are people still recovering from it. How then, is is possible, that within the exact same state, there are cities even worse off than Flint? Even as far back as 2017, there were over 70 other cities with more lead in the water, and very few people focused on that. The problem is worse than just bad water, however, with an article in september of 2021 showing that there was a town, Benton Harber, with not only higher levels of lead than Flint, but that there was a town not three miles away from it, called St Joseph, that had perfectly fine water to drink. What some people thought was an isolated incident is statewide, and very clearly has some sort of racial undertones, at least for parts of it, so what is the root cause, and how can we fix it?
water pollution, racism, public health, toxics, lead