On Thursday, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg announced that the Department of Transportation would be spending at least $1 billion to address so-called “racism” in America’s public roads.
As reported by the Daily Caller, the program will be called Reconnecting Communities, which the Transportation Department calls the “first of its kind.” The new initiative says it will focus on rebuilding communities that were “racially segregated or divided by road projects.”
Claiming, with no evidence, that the design of the interstate highway system in the 1950s was specifically meant to negatively impact African-American areas, Buttigieg said that the program will provide financial handouts over the course of five years to predominantly African-American communities across the country.
“Transportation can connect us to jobs, services and loved ones, but we’ve also seen countless cases around the country where a piece of infrastructure cuts off a neighborhood or a community because of how it was built,” Buttigieg said during his announcement speech in Birmingham, Alabama.
“We can’t ignore the basic truth: that some of the planners and politicians behind those projects built them directly through the heart of vibrant populated communities,” Buttigieg falsely claimed. “Sometimes as an effort to reinforce segregation. Sometimes because the people there have less power to resist. And sometimes as part of a direct effort to replace or eliminate Black neighborhoods.”
The announcement builds off of previous suggestions by Joe Biden, laid out in his proposals for the American Jobs Plan in 2021, to spend as much as $20 billion to “reconnect neighborhoods cut off by historic investments and ensure new projects increase opportunity, advance racial equity and environmental justice, and promote affordable access.”
Among the cities seeking federal handouts from the new program are: Portland, Oregon; St. Paul, Minnesota; Tampa, Florida; Syracuse, New York; Houston, Texas; and New Orleans, Louisiana.
Even left-wing groups admitted that the concept of “racist” roads was a “fringe idea,” but nevertheless praised the Biden Administration for promoting such a conspiracy.
“Prior to 2021, the idea that we would deal with highway infrastructure that has divided communities was very much a fringe idea,” said Ben Crowther, a spokesman for the Freeway Fighters Network. “The Biden administration has really transformed that into mainstream thinking.”