Like a skipping record: Little Rock racism

The Observer desperately needs to relocate. Saturday morning we came upon a building that looked promising. The sign out front proclaimed “Now Leasing,” with an arrow to the office. We strolled up to this high-ceiling joint, eager to scout a refurbished glimpse of “historic Little Rock.” What we got was an unwelcome glimpse of history repeating itself.

The Observer has spent a few months howling in frustration over a bullying landlord. But in that overcast morning just across the freeway from Central High, we were reminded of how many people face incessant, systemic bullying every day. And because we, as witnesses, often sidestep these incidents, we are all complicit.

At the lovely apartments that we can no longer fathom leasing, the office was closed but the contractor was available. He’s a large white guy in a large white truck, and he was happy to show us around. He took us through at least four apartments, proudly detailing amenities. He would have given us an even more extensive tour, but we were eager to get on with our search, and there was another man who showed up with questions. We thanked Mr. Contractor and said, “We’ll get out of your hair so you can help this guy.” We were a few steps away when we heard the man say, “I’d like to see the apartments and talk to someone about leasing,” and Mr. Contractor said, “I’m sorry, I can’t help you. You’ll have to come back Monday.” Nor did he offer the name and number of the leasing agent, the way that he did for us.

Keep reading.

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