Let’s Save Michigan is fighting to take ownership of our state’s future, and we need you to join us.
Michiganders can look back on the 20th century with immense pride. Our state helped lay the groundwork for the American middle class, and our residents enjoyed an unparalleled quality of life. Our assembly lines and recording studios churned out cars and music that shaped the modern world, and our cities sprouted world-class museums, buildings, parks, festivals, and other monuments to prosperity and cultural abundance.
But right now, Michigan is struggling. Unless we seize this opportunity to redefine and rebuild our beloved state, we may lose the very things that make it such a special place to live.
Thanks partly to the collapse and restructuring of the auto industry, Michigan is enduring drastic job losses and the highest unemployment rate in the nation. The legislature is grappling with the frightening implications of declining tax revenue. Tens of thousands of residents, including nearly half of all recent college graduates, are moving out of the state every year for jobs and better opportunities. And while the state’s giants of industry are repositioning themselves to succeed in an era of worldwide competition, it’s unlikely that Michigan will once again become the big manufacturing power that it was during the industrial era.
The key to Michigan’s survival is redeveloping our cities so they will attract and retain today’s highly mobile, highly skilled workers. The people who can transform Michigan’s economy want to live in places where they can enjoy themselves—places with public transit, parks and recreation, good municipal services, and walkable downtowns filled with enticing restaurants, clubs, and stores. Why do so many talented professionals want to live in Chicago and New York and Minneapolis? It’s not for the weather. People are attracted to those places because of the lifestyles they allow and the opportunities they present.
The Let’s Save Michigan campaign won’t shy away from addressing the state’s many challenges. But our main goal is to inspire Michiganders to take ownership of our future and get involved. The campaign will provide people with a wide range of opportunities to make a difference, big and small.
With the right policies in place, Michigan can create the vibrant communities that will attract 21st century workers. Let’s make Michigan the place it can be—and the place it needs to be.
Main homepage photo by Flickr user ifmuth, via a Creative Commons license.