Sad downfall of a city.
I have lived here all my life. I am quite young, so I don't have the same insight as some older people, but to me, Tucson has always been an economically depressed town, and I realized quickly I would never be able to have a future here. Tucson is definitely a classist city, without a doubt - you have your rich oldies and northerners who move here for the ridiculously low cost of living, and then you have the actual native Tucson residents who seem to live in abject poverty with no hope of escape.
There are wealthy neighborhoods next to trailer parks. There are no good schools, other than the ones outside city limits, and one private high school. The mentality here is very interesting, I have never met anyone (other than my classmates at private school) who seemed interested in what the world had to offer and were happy living in cockroach infested apartments and trailer parks, leaching off meager government benefits. People are here laid back, too laid back if you ask me. There is no reason to be living in third world poverty when we live in America.
There are no good paying jobs here outside of the AF base, hospital, university, or Raytheon. Without Davis Monthan and the university, this place would have died years ago. If you have money, you will have an amazing life here - the golf courses and the houses in the Foothills are to die for, and you can escape the heat in the summer. But the rest of us can't even seem to scrape by, it seems.
The education here is dismal. It won't even prepare you for the next level, and people here may as well be illiterate. I have had the unique opportunity to travel around the country as well as abroad, and now that I know what is out there, I refuse to stay in a city that will not acknowledge my intelligence or get with the times.
You will often get your staunch Tucson defenders, pretty evident in this review thread. Ignore them. They are a large part of the problem. There is nothing to defend other than the cost of living. Crime is also a huge problem here, and the city seems to be hooked on meth. Every corner will have a homeless beggar, or multiple.
Tucson used to have potential, but alas, when an entire city seems to not care about its sad conditions, not much can be done to change it. That is why U of A grads leave the city in droves for jobs. Do not move here. Look at it on a post card and be glad you weren't subjected to this sort of life.