In my interview with Mike Valerio for Channel 12, I suggested that we must address the spread of racism in America.
“We need to refocus our efforts, helping those in the shadows,” Wilder said in an interview Friday. “We need to close a gap, that has contributed to this violence.”
Wilder already belongs to the pages of history. And for the former governor, making sense of the shootings in Dallas, suburban St. Paul and Baton Rouge requires delving deep into decades of what he describes as failed leadership, now 50 years in the making.
“We have more representation for the African-American community in this country’s history, ever,” Wilder remarked. “But it’s not necessarily representing the people – the ones who need our help the most.”
Wilder describes a disconnect, a widening gap between elected officials and the people who live in the neglected communities across the country. The former governor also believes political priorities have not addressed the need to conquer urban blight, and grow opportunities for all.
When the divide is in place for too long, Wilder sees mistrust, anger, and even chaos, taking root.
“We can’t allow this gap to widen,” Wilder stressed. “It is widening, I feel it when I see and speak with people every day across our city, across our country.”
Wilder cites a critical turning point – during the height of the Civil Rights Movement – as a missed opportunity that may explain factors of the unfolding discord in a new century.”