Is Baltimore "Slowly Turning into a Ghost Town?"

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I’m always happy to see Baltimore make it into the national conversation, even when it’s a joke at our expense — as long as it’s funny. But this morning Business Insider ran an article titled “Baltimore Has Decided Some Neighborhoods Just Aren’t Worth Saving,” and I found it strangely troubling — particularly the article’s description of Baltimore as “a living city slowly turning into a ghost town.”

It’s not that I’m averse to sober assessments of our city’s plight. But it was strange to hear Baltimore’s struggle with vacancies described by an outsider to other outsiders. I couldn’t help feeling that the readers weren’t given the whole picture of what it means to live in Baltimore.

This feeling was confirmed by the comment section. In addition to many commenters who would like to blame our troubles on Obama, one reader wrote, “I live in Arizona and until I read this I didn’t realize how scary Baltimore was.” Another reader planned to send the pictures of abandoned buildings (blight porn?) accompanying the article overseas with the heading “the new face of the USA.”

What do you think, are middle-class Baltimoreans in denial about the state of the city? Or is “almost a ghost town” a distorted assessment?



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  1. I guess I don’t mind what outsiders think. Baltimore has architecture, art museums, thriving communities and small businesses, delicious food (some of the best restaurants in the country), parks, bike lanes, trees, beauty. It’s inexpensive; you can own a big house with a yard for a pittance and still be in a safe place. The people who leave come back because it’s worth it to live here.

    So let them stay away. Baltimore is for Baltimoreans and for the people who are smart enough to keep the C on Charm City.

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