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Taking Back Detroit

Taking Back Detroit

In the 1970s and early 1980s Detroit was the setting for an unusual development in U.S. urban politics, as voters elected two socialists to citywide office. TAKING BACK DETROIT examines these people and their organization against the backdrop of a city in extreme economic crisis.

The film profiles City Council member Ken Cockrel and Recorders Court Judge Justin Ravitz. They discuss the challenges they face, and the vision they bring to their work.

Cockrel and Ravitz and their political organization, DARE, opposed the accepted agenda for Detroit - tax abatements for industry, federal money for developers, cuts in city services, abandonment of older neighborhoods. They emphasize that the city could be made to serve its residents first - though not surprisingly the film shows that promoting this idea was no simple task.

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