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Urban Culture Curator Chris Robinson Chronicles Gary, Indiana, Hometown Through Documentary “Looted”

Photo courtesy of Chris Robinson

Gary native and 2020 Documentary graduate Chris Robinson just debuted his first major project “Looted,” a documentary about his hometown of Gary, Indiana.

Nearly a year ago, our country experienced a wave of looting in response to ongoing racial injustice. Unfortunately, cities such as Gary, Indiana, have suffered from the long-term effect of looting. Gary’s rise and fall, in the Rust Belt, is reflective of the steel industry.

The city’s peak population in 1960 was 178, 000 citizens – it is now occupied by less than 80,000 residents. While the Steel City was once the 70th largest city in America, it is now the 478th – about one-third of the homes in Gary are unoccupied or abandoned.

While the U.S. Steel Corporation remains a major steel producer, it spiraled downward from 30,000 workers to only 5,000 employees. Now, what once called the “Magic City” faces insurmountable numbers of unemployment, decaying infrastructure, and 21 abandoned buildings within the bankrupt school system.

Community leaders and residents comment on the above scenario throughout the film and the impending comeback of the Steel City.

“I want everyone to know the story of my city,” said Robinson. “Once we, especially my generation, learn the true history of Gary, we will be armed with knowledge and hopefully motivated to do our part to effect change.”

About the Author

New York Trend is a weekly news publication that focuses on issues and lifestyles of the African & Caribbean American communities throughout the New York metropolitan area and Nassau and Suffolk Counties of Long Island. It is a respected and well recognized news publication that has been in existence since 1989. Owner, Publisher and Executive Director, Dr. Teresa Taylor Williams has been at the helm of this award-winning publication since its inception. New York Trend continues to be the only black woman-owned, metropolitan newspaper in New York and Long island. New York Trend is the largest black-owned newspaper throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties.

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