Detroit River Fishing

The Great Detroit Flood of 2014 resulted from the second largest downpour in Detroit history. It closed several expressways and poured into thousands of Metro Detroit basements. The 4.72 inches of rain was the highest daily recorded rainfall since July 31, 1925, when 4.74 inches of rain fell. What went wrong? Could it have been prevented?

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  1. #1
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    Default Coleman Young's testimony before the House Un-American Activities Committee

    I have heard that there was a recording made of his epic testimony - which included many heated verbal exchanges with southern legislators - on Feb. 28, 1952. Has anyone here ever heard the testimony? And is there anyway to obtain a copy?

  2. #2
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    I recall that it was played on WDET at length on the day CAY died. It was great.

  3. #3
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    Ah, yes, I remember the one southern Senator - can't recall which one - kept saying this and that about the "Nigras", as he was pronouncing it, and Young admonished him, "The word is 'negro'. Speak more clearly."

    Then later, when asked whether he thought this or that activity was unamerican, replied with "I find these hearings to be unamerican".

    I'm paraphrasing, my memory is not what it once was, but this is the way he was talking to the United States Senate, and God bless him for it.

  4. #4
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    I wonder how many folks out there voted for Coleman Young "once" in 1973. I felt Coleman was the right guy in '73, certainly over John Nichols, a rather bitter sounding Detroit cop. I think Coleman hit is political peak in his first term as mayor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Al Publican View Post
    I wonder how many folks out there voted for Coleman Young "once" in 1973. I felt Coleman was the right guy in '73, certainly over John Nichols, a rather bitter sounding Detroit cop. I think Coleman hit is political peak in his first term as mayor.
    First or possibly second. After that he was coasting. In 1973 he had a good idea of what the problems were; by 1980 the problems had changed but his opinions had not.

  6. #6
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    Young stayed in office at least two terms too long. But his accomplishments during his first two terms were numerous. I would say in those eight years he was the best mayor of Detroit since the decline began in the early 1950s. I emphasize those eight years.

    I voted for him in 73, 77, 81 and 85. I wasn't enthusiastic about voting for him in 85, but his opponent, Tom Barrow, showed signs of the craziness that later made him the male version of Sharon McPhail.

    By 89 I no longer was living in Detroit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Carey View Post
    Young stayed in office at least two terms too long. But his accomplishments during his first two terms were numerous. I would say in those eight years he was the best mayor of Detroit since the decline began in the early 1950s. I emphasize those eight years.

    I voted for him in 73, 77, 81 and 85. I wasn't enthusiastic about voting for him in 85, but his opponent, Tom Barrow, showed signs of the craziness that later made him the male version of Sharon McPhail.

    By 89 I no longer was living in Detroit.
    What were his accomplishments?

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    besides barrow, were there ever any 'serious' rivals during his tenure?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by rjk View Post
    What were his accomplishments?

    None that I can think of beside being a thug and a crook. Compared to Young, Kwame was the most perfect, honest and honorable politician in the history of the world.

    You can candy-coat his tyranny any way you want to, but he was definitely the beginning of the end of the City.
    Last edited by Meddle; June-22-11 at 09:51 AM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by rjk View Post
    What were his accomplishments?
    Intergrated the Police and Fire departments along with other city departments. The Renaissance Center, Millender Center, Detroit One Center, the Madden Building, Joe Louis Arena, Police Mini Stations, revamped the civic center, brought in Southwest Airlines and actually got some use out of City Airport. Led the charge that integrated Wayne County Municipal Government. The People Mover (ironically enough, his original plans, that were fought tooth and nail, called for the people mover to stretch all over the metro area). The Riverfront apartments, Virginia Park, Victoria Park. The Poletown Plant. Managed to have real Ethnic Festivals that ran every week for 5-6 months a year. And managed to have some of the most entertaining quotes that you'll ever hear.

    Sure he had his failings, but he did manage to get some things accomplished. And they shouldn't be overlooked.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by kraig View Post
    Intergrated the Police and Fire departments along with other city departments. The Renaissance Center, Millender Center, Detroit One Center, the Madden Building, Joe Louis Arena, Police Mini Stations, revamped the civic center, brought in Southwest Airlines and actually got some use out of City Airport. Led the charge that integrated Wayne County Municipal Government. The People Mover (ironically enough, his original plans, that were fought tooth and nail, called for the people mover to stretch all over the metro area). The Riverfront apartments, Virginia Park, Victoria Park. The Poletown Plant. Managed to have real Ethnic Festivals that ran every week for 5-6 months a year. And managed to have some of the most entertaining quotes that you'll ever hear.

    Sure he had his failings, but he did manage to get some things accomplished. And they shouldn't be overlooked.
    His testimony before HUAC was his finest hour, but his reform of the DPD was overdue and very important. As for Poletown ... a good argument why he should have been a one-term mayor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Detroitnerd View Post
    His testimony before HUAC was his finest hour, but his reform of the DPD was overdue and very important. As for Poletown ... a good argument why he should have been a one-term mayor.
    While I listed it as one of his accomplishments, I do agree with your sentiments on the Poletown Plant. I've never been a fan of eminient domain, which is one of the problems I have with the DRIC. The similarities between the two are horrifying.

  13. #13
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    The House of Un-American Activities Committee accused Coleman A. Young of organizing an 'different upside down union'. Sen. McCarthy called it COMMUNISM! If convicted he could BLACKLISTED out of the American life for good. He might as well go to the Soviet Union and work collectively for the Kremlin.

    WORD FROM THE STREET PROPHET

    In 1950's America, who side are you on? The Blue Eagle or the Red Grizzly Bear!

    Neda, I miss you so.
    Last edited by Danny; June-22-11 at 01:25 PM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by kraig View Post
    Sure he had his failings, but he did manage to get some things accomplished. And they shouldn't be overlooked.
    Don't forget that he regularly balanced the budgets as well. I remember during one of the elections, there were billboards around the city with a big smiling picture of him with the slogan, "The Money's Right", and went on to tout something like 5 straight balanced budgets.

  15. #15
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    Y'all been drinkin' the Koolaid again.

    The City Airport mess alone should have gotten Hizzonah tossed into river with an anchor around his neck.
    Last edited by Meddle; June-22-11 at 12:52 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Meddle View Post
    Y'all been drinkin' the Koolaid again.

    The City Airport mess alone should have gotten Hizzonah tossed into river with an anchor around his neck.
    Don't just leave us hanging. What happened with the Airport?

  17. #17
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    What became of Coleman's lover Ann Ivory? The last I heard, she landed a job with the City of Fontana, CA, maybe as director of parks and rec. Is Joel Loving, Coleman's son with Ann Ivory, the fella that changed his name to Coleman Young Jr. and the fella that ran for city council?

  18. #18
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    In the mid 70', my friend and I crashed some bigwig party downtown. We were cute young women who could get away with stuff like this.

    We were standing somewhere when Coleman Young came out and we asked him if he would take a picture with us. He obliged. We were all arm-in-arm as the camera flashed. He had on body armor.

    I have no idea where that picture is or I would post it. it's somewhere in my stuff.

  19. #19
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    What happened with the Airport?
    The whole bit about Southwest and closing E. McNichols trying to fake it as an airport. Doomed to failure from before the drawing board. Should have been left as a corporate and general aviation facility. And should be restored to that now. A typical Coleman farce.


    We were standing somewhere when Coleman Young came out and we asked him if he would take a picture with us. He obliged. We were all arm-in-arm as the camera flashed.
    To me, that would be on par with a picture with Charles Manson.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Al Publican View Post
    What became of Coleman's lover Ann Ivory? The last I heard, she landed a job with the City of Fontana, CA, maybe as director of parks and rec. Is Joel Loving, Coleman's son with Ann Ivory, the fella that changed his name to Coleman Young Jr. and the fella that ran for city council?
    Coleman Young Jr. is now a State Senator in Michigan. His mother has been running his campaigns and has ran for offices herself.

  21. #21
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    [QUOTE=Meddle;253425]The whole bit about Southwest and closing E. McNichols trying to fake it as an airport. Doomed to failure from before the drawing board. Should have been left as a corporate and general aviation facility. And should be restored to that now. A typical Coleman farce.







    As I remember it, this was being done at the same time that Chicago was having plenty of success with Midway Airport doing the same thing. The plan was to install a longer runway to accomodate the demand for larger commercial aircraft. There was actually a very thorough airport master plan that was put together. The City Council back then balked at that plan during the same time period that they turned down letting Comerica build their headquarters were a vacant Ford Auditorium is still standing.

    After the City Council said no to developing the Airport, Northwest Airlines, which had shown a very strong interest in setting up some operations at City Airport, ended up having to work out a much more expensive expansion (450+ million) at Metro Airport. Had City Council said yes, the City of Detroit would probably have at least a half dozen major airlines operating out of city airport along with the corporate and general aviation operators that packed up and went to the Oakland County International Airport, due to the fact, that the new larger plans that they were acquiring could not be accomodated by city airport either. Subsequently, making Oakland County's airport one of the busiest in the country at that time and still very busy today.

    Like I said, Coleman had his faults. But having a vision to turn City Airport into a real airport wasn't one of them.

  22. #22
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    It's incredible, and I mean incredible in the true sense of that word, to compare Coleman Young to Charles Manson.

    To say he should have been tossed in the river with an anchor around his neck for the airport, and then the only thing that can be mentioned about the airport is that is was a "farce" because it should have remained corporate and general aviation seems the product of nothing more than pure hatred.

    To claim he was a "thug" and give no incidences of violence he committed against anyone ('cause that's what thugs do) is equally incredible.

    To call him a crook and not be able to point to any occasions when he was indicted for anything is irresponsible.

    He stayed in office too long. He began to think of himself as synonymous with "Detroit". A few of his people were crooks, but some of them were far more effective and much better executive material than any we have had in place since.

    He has a legacy that is greater than his time as mayor. That will not be erased by those who only knew of him for some 20-odd years and got pissed ever since he told criminals to "hit 8 Mile" and insisted upon inclusion of those who had been disenfranchised - something he fought for long before he got involved in politics.

    The man has been dead for a long time and he can still touch a raw nerve in many people. Perhaps that will be his greatest accomplishment of all, for it gives him a form of immortality, at least in these parts.

  23. #23
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    It's incredible, and I mean incredible in the true sense of that word, to compare Coleman Young to Charles Manson.
    Yeah, it's probably not fair to Manson. Even he wasn't as evil as Young.

    The man has been dead for a long time
    Not long enough. If he had died in the 60s and never tainted Detroit, the city might be a better place now.

  24. #24
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    I imagine that if you were a die-hard racist, and really enjoyed the Detroit Police Department being an instrument of the white power movement, and hated that Detroit had the distinction of being among the first major U.S. cities to long-overdue vote in a black mayor ... then I guess you'd hate Coleman Young your whole life long, and never see any benefit from him, even that first term.

  25. #25
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    A lot of folks around here, Meddle included it seems, have never forgiven Coleman Young for his first failing in their eyes - one of having the wrong pigmentation. Once you start there, it's pretty damn hard to be objective about anything else a person does.

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