The citizens of Detroit, Michigan have raised over $50,000 to erect a statue of Robocop in the city, according to a story on Detroit News’ website. It only took the residents six days to gather the necessary donations after an Oakland, California advertising entrepreneur named Pete Hottelet push them over the goal by donating $25,000!
Robocop, Detroit’s Rocky?
A subsequent story that ran on CNN, gives us some background on this odd campaign:
Last week, Mayor Dave Bing received a tweet from one of his followers, saying, “Philadelphia has a statue of Rocky & Robocop would kick Rocky’s butt. He’s a GREAT ambassador for Detroit.” But Bing shot down his request, saying, “There are not any plans to erect a statue to Robocop. Thank you for the suggestion.”
Shortly afterward, however, a campaign was launched to raise funds for the statue.
Apparently, not all Detroit residents believe that building this statue will be a good idea:
It has since generated national media attention and substantial debate within Detroit between those who believe a statue is fun and could be a tourist attraction and those who believe it is silly idea at best and condescending reminder of the city’s crime problems at worst.
I really do think that both views are taking the significance of this statue too far! I’m pretty sure that Detroit has enough to remind visitors of the city’s crime problems. On the other hand, I doubt that people will flock to Detroit to see a statue of a character from a bad movie!
Should The Robocop Statue Be A Priority In Detroit?
Many people already know just how hard hit the city has been in recent years. Major manufacturing plants located in and around the city have closed (including many of the automotive giants), leading to a mass exodus of both jobs and skilled workers!
This has lead to massive foreclosures (some houses were even selling for $100), severe unemployment (it was estimated to be between 12.7 and 13.8 percent during the last quarter of 2010), and more crime then even Robocop could handle!
Considering all of this, should building a statue dedicated to a movie character be this important to the residents of Detroit?
Some would say that all of the efforts of the citizens should be concentrated on trying to fix their economy, or at least provide temporary relief to those who are struggling the most. Think about how many meals for the homeless could have been purchased with that $50,000.
Remember, it only took 6 days for them to reach their goal. Just imagine what a more long-term campaign could do given this much publicity and effort (or if they stuck to a simple budget and vowed to improve their finances)!
Do you think the citizens of Detroit should focus their time, energy, and money on more important matters?
How do you feel about a city with so much poverty and unemployment being able to come up with that much money that fast?
Do you think this statue will help to bring a little joy and excitement to a city that is struggling?
Couldn’t they have found a cool character like Axel Foley, instead?
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