The 1935 Minneapolis planning map to which U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison refers ("North Side needs leaders who share its values," May 23) circles the North Side with the caption: "SLUM. Negro Section. (Largest in the city.)"

The fact that this map shows our economic and racial segregation so long ago says volumes about why today we top the nation in category after category for racial disparity, and are among the most segregated cities in the nation.

Today's Minneapolis planning maps would look the same, except that the segregated area is now larger. Economic and racial segregation results in systemic disparities in resources and opportunities.

Segregation is the root cause of our many disparities. Housing is the key factor we have used to maintain this appalling disparity.

That will never change until we end economic and racial segregation by creating scattered, affordable housing in the suburbs, and throughout the state.