This sounds like what you might call a "drive-by assessment" of public housing. For those of us who actually lived there, the reality paints a different picture.<quoted text>I'm not sure what you mean by the problems that are left. If problems do remain, if African Americans do not the only thing I can see is that the ones that don't make it have been institutionalized in a way. I don't know exactly how to explain what I'm trying to say. Blackheart is right, blacks were almost exclusively the inhabitants of the projects, but it's not because the blacks wanted that, it's because the government wanted that. Once in that situation, the schools are not good, why would they be if there is little financial support with property taxes. Busing became too difficult, and it's like dominoes, one bad thing creates another, and it's hard to get out. Quite frankly I think the projects were basically meant to be much like the reservations. The promise was something of their own and it never was their own. To me it is miraculous how many african americans have managed to overcome the odds. It speaks well for their determination.
As a newly divorced mother of two, my mother too advantage of public housing in about 64-66. While waiting for a slot, we lived in relative's houses, and even a garage for a time. In my memory, it it was a representative demographic mix of low-income people - single mothers, elderly, blacks, whites, the gamut. Two of my great-grandmothers also lived in the "projects". I don't know about you, but we were thankful that society, thru gov't, provided a means we could get out of living in a garage.
As for getting out, it comes down to opportunity and desire. For single women at the time, much as was for minorities, in spite of how much desire there was, there just weren't many family-wage jobs for high-school educated women in the 60's (much less today). A woman's best chances at the time were to find a man to marry, and such was the case here - we didn't get out until Mom married a man with a decent job. As hard as it was for a woman, I can only imagine the obstacles for a socially-marginalized minority.
You say it's the gov't who "wants" to keep them there. I say it's a lack of desire on the part of a few, but a lack of opportunity to escape for the overwhelming majority.