[credit provider=”Wikimedia Commons” url=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Detroit_Night_Skyline.JPG”]
Detroit was once the symbol of American wealth and industrial capacity. It is now everybody’s emblem of decline. The data about Detroit grow more depressing by the month. This report may be the most depressing thing you’ll read all year.
In a nutshell, it says that roughly half of all the people who live in Detroit are illiterate. They can’t read the back of a cereal box. They can’t read a weather report. They can’t read at all.
As Andrew Coulson notes in his blog at Cato: “Virtually the entire illiterate population has completed elementary school, the level at which reading is theoretically taught. That’s seven years of schooling (k-6), at a cost of roughly $100,000, for… nothing.”
By way of epitaph, last month every teacher in the Detroit public school system was laid off.