The Grio’s White House correspondent and CNN political analyst April Ryan pressed Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg Monday to explain how he would “deconstruct the racism that was built into the roadways.”
Buttigieg spoke about the $1 trillion infrastructure bill that has been recently passed by the House during Monday’s White House briefing, where he was asked to outline his plan to address the racism that undergirded public transportation infrastructure.
The secretary of transportation said that investment programs that could potentially benefit the disadvantaged communities would be reviewed on a “program by program, mode by mode” basis.
“Some people were surprised when I pointed to the fact that if a highway was built for the purpose of dividing a white and a Black neighborhood, or if an underpass was constructed such that a bus carrying mostly Black and Puerto Rican kids … was designed too low for it to pass by, then that obviously reflect the racism that went into those design choices,” he said.
Buttigieg then claimed that $1 billion was going to be dedicated to remedying the damage wrought on those communities. (RELATED: Democrats Want To Tear Down Highways … To Solve Historic Racism?)
“But that’s such a heavy lift. You have to reconstruct communities that this happened to,” the reporter further pressed Buttigieg. “How do you go about redefining and replanning these roadways and communities that are already settled in?”
“It’s gonna vary by community, and we have to listen to a community,” the transportation secretary responded, noting that there would be no “one-size-fits-all answer.”