By Brentin Mock
March 30, 2016
“Last week, the Flint Water Advisory Task Force delivered to Michigan Governor Rick Snyder its final report, a comprehensive treatise on what went wrong in the city’s water crisis and who deserves blame. Though The New York Times’editorial board quickly called out the racism at the heart of the disaster, the task force ties itself up in knots parsing that particular conclusion in its report.
Indeed, the report’s executive summary notes up front that, “Given the demographics of Flint, the implications for environmental injustice cannot be ignored or dismissed.”
But without explaining what “environmental injustice” means, which the executive summary doesn’t, the implications certainly can be ignored. This is not a term that the general public has much familiarity with. It’s not until page 58, halfway into the 116-page report, that the task force explains that “environmental injustice” refers to racism.”