• Josh Lewis

Episode 90 – Redlining and Reparations with Charles Marohn

Updated: Sep 10


America’s history of bigotry and racism have left wounds that fester to this day. How might the country make amends to those racial minorities who were harmed? To what extent are white Americans responsible for addressing wrongs perpetrated by their ancestors? To what extent can the effects of these past sins be measured and known?


These are not easy questions, nor is there much consensus on where we go from here. But there is one area where both conservatives and liberals may be able to find common ground: addressing historic wrongs committed by the practice of redlining at the local level. Saving Elephants host Josh Lewis is joined again by Charles Marohn to discuss the history of redlining, its effect on American minorities, and a possible path forward to making restitutions consistent with conservative principles. Much of their discussion centers around an article Marohn wrote for Strong Towns entitled The Local Case for Reparations.


About Charles Marohn

Charles (or “Chuck” to friends and colleagues) Marohn is the founder and president of Strong Towns, a nonprofit that supports thousands of people across the United States and Canada who are advocating for a radically new way of thinking about the way we build our world. Marohn is a professional engineer and a land use planner with decades of experience. He holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering and a Master of Urban and Regional Planning, both from the University of Minnesota.


Marohn is the author of two books: Strong Towns: A Bottom-Up Revolution to Rebuild American Prosperity and Confessions of a Recovering Engineer. He hosts the Strong Towns Podcast and is a primary writer for Strong Towns’ web content. He has presented Strong Towns concepts in hundreds of cities and towns across North America. Planetizen named him one of the 10 Most Influential Urbanists of all time. He is a long-time commentator on KAXE Northern Community Radio. He currently co-hosts KAXE’s Dig Deep program, a monthly examination of public policy issues affecting Minnesotans.


Marohn grew up on a small farm in central Minnesota. The oldest of three sons of two elementary school teachers, he joined the Minnesota National Guard on his seventeenth birthday during his junior year of high school and served in the Guard for nine years. In addition to being passionate about building a stronger America, he loves playing music, is an obsessive reader, and religiously follows his favorite team, the Minnesota Twins. Chuck and his wife live with their two daughters in their hometown of Brainerd, Minnesota. You can find him on Twitter @clmarohn


Listener Mail

Josh responds to a listener’s message asking if he would encourage his listeners to get the COVID-19 vaccine.


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