07062020What's Hot:

Coronavirus Live Updates: U.S. Sends Two Million Hydroxychloroquine Doses to Brazil

Jimmy Mills’s barbershop in Midtown Minneapolis was one of many small, black-owned businesses that have struggled to survive the pandemic. But Mr. Mills was hopeful because, after two months of shut down, he was set to reopen next week.

Then early on Friday, the working-class neighborhood where Mr. Mills has cut hair for 12 years went up in flames as chaotic protests over the death of George Floyd and police killings of African-Americans engulfed Minneapolis and cities across the country.

“To have corona, and then this — it’s like a gut shot,” Mr. Mills, 56, said.

With more than 200 businesses damaged or destroyed in the unrest, Mr. Noor said he was worried about new waves of foreclosures, job losses and business failures.

“Many people who are poor who didn’t have much, this devastation will really impact them,” Mr. Noor said.

Even before the pandemic, the Midtown neighborhood, where buildings were burned, damaged and looted, had been trying to rebuild itself after years of economic hardship. The area is in a historically segregated part of town where some residents had felt neglected. A railway was repurposed into a bike and walking trail that runs through the neighborhood. The Midtown Global Market had sprung up, attracting diners and shoppers to its Hmong, Indian, Moroccan and other international food and crafts.

But now, next door to Mr. Mills, the barber, a dollar store and beauty-supply shop have been burned to rubble. The front windows of Mr. Mills’s barbershop were smashed, and looters stole his televisions, video equipment and his clippers.

With the power out, water seeping across the floor and phalanxes of police officers and National Guard troops blockading his neighborhood, he does not know when his J-Klips barbershop might reopen.

Source: NYT > World News

comments powered by HyperComments

More on the topic