Al Jazeera presenter Tony Harris takes a personal look at Baltimore’s inner city and an education system that has failed black Americans.
Baltimore, Maryland has come to be known as ‘Charm City’ because of its harbour, which attracts a vibrant nightlife and thriving tourism business.
But just beyond the harbour’s calm waters is one of the toughest and most violent inner cities in the US.
Baltimore is also home to Al Jazeera presenter Tony Harris and in this episode of Al Jazeera Correspondent he takes us on an up close and personal journey to his old neighbourhood to witness the challenges facing black youth today as they struggle to get out of the dead end of life on inner city streets.
Most of the crime in Baltimore is committed by black males with other blacks as victims, making black males an easy target for the police.
And many believe that the stereotyping of black kids starts at an early age in the US – as early as grade school. In this film, Harris examines how the education system has failed black boys and reflects upon why he managed to make it out successfully while so many of his friends did not.
A visit to his former high school reveals the desperation felt by both the pupils and the teachers.
“School and criminal justice systems biased against black boys; all echoes of my childhood. But I managed to avoid the trap of Baltimore’s cycle of poverty and violence,” he explains. “But now I was going back to my hometown to get to the bottom of what I considered the new civil rights fight in America – educating black boys.”
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