This is response to a challenge posed by The Daily Post.
Capital is clawing tooth-and-nail to reclaim the urban metropolis in this new century and, through the ethnic cleansing of gentrification, is doing a swell job at it.
The reclamation of the city by the financial system has a very clear and obvious intent. The gains made by the American polity was tied to the African Great Migration that spanned 1910-1970. As these populations built up metropolitan centers and historic cities of color, progressive politics were advanced throughout the United States. This is because, on an issue-based analytical scale, black and brown people are the most left-leaning voter demographic in America with their support for a progressive tax code, universal healthcare, opposition to war, support for LGBTQQI and feminist protections, and many other issues.
Economist Michael Hudson has described in his excellent book Killing the Host how the finance, insurance, and real estate industries, called the FIRE sector, have formed a monopoly-like system intending to create a neo-feudal system that forces the population into a debt peonage system. And the greatest obstacle to this is the black and brown communities in urban centers that oppose this and simultaneously face the onslaught of it first and foremost. As such, breaking up their neighborhoods via gentrification is a major goal.
Right now, white hipsters are descending on Providence helping this goal, consciously or unconsciously. Hell, some may even think, due in no small part to a delusion caused by neoliberal identity politics, that they are actually doing some good.
But we locals know better. I personally avoid hipster enclaves like the plague and refuse to move into Providence to help with this project, even if it means I have an extra-long commute. Because at the end of the day locals are more important to me than these vampire-like hipsters.
Locals at a recent downtown Providence protest in solidarity with the Standing Rock American Indians.