Up from a Florida ghetto
Liberty City, Fla. — Dozens of tranquil side streets are lined with small- to medium-size homes, often painted with bright, cheerful colors. Children ride bicycles and play in the yards.
Not everyone is dirt-poor in Liberty City, site of one of the nation's worst riots in 1980.
But there are also blocks of one- and two-story housing projects for poor families and knots of idle men and youths on many corners.
Thomas Jones Jr., a young black here, indicated that - poor or not - having parents who are strict can help someone break out of the worst aspects of ghetto life. He recalls his days as a student:
''When the street lights came on, I had to be inside (doing homework),'' he says. When he went out, he had to be home at pre-established times. ''I remember I'd come in a half-hour late and they (his parents) wanted to know what I was doing.''
The discipline apparently paid off. He went on to college where he got a degree in marketing management. Today he is about to open, with others, a supermarket in a new shopping mall in another black neighborhood where a riot occurred in 1982. When it opens, the business will provide 30 to 40 much-needed jobs for people in the area, he said.