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"Racism" now a standard line-item in the city plan.

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  • "Racism" now a standard line-item in the city plan.

    The illimitable Steve Sailer brings us this particular gem from the AP:

    Three years ago, Lamar Grace left Detroit for the suburb of Southfield. He got a good deal ó a 3,000-square-foot colonial that once was worth $220,000. In foreclosure, he paid $109,000.

    The neighbors were not pleased.

    "They don't want to live next door to ghetto folks," he says.

    That his neighbors are black, like Grace, is immaterial. Many in the black middle class moved out of Detroit and settled in the northern suburbs years ago; now, due to foreclosures, it is easy to buy or rent houses on the cheap here. The result has been a new, poorer wave of arrivals from the city, and growing tensions between established residents and the newcomers.
    This article was written in the bad old reactionary days of 2011, so excuse any open crimespeak.

    The neighbors say there's more to it than that. People like John Clanton, a retired auto worker, say the new arrivals have brought behavior more common in the inner city ó increased trash, adults and children on the streets at all times of the night, a disregard for others' property.

    "During the summer months, I sat in the garage and at 3 o'clock in the morning you see them walking up and the down the streets on their cell phones talking," Clanton says. "They pull up (in cars) in the middle of the street, and they'll hold a conversation. You can't get in your driveway. You blow the horn and they look back at you and keep on talking. That's all Detroit."


    The tensions have not gone unnoticed by local officials.

    "I've got people of color who don't want people of color to move into the city," says Southfield Police Chief Joseph Thomas, who is himself black. "It's not a black-white thing. This is a black-black thing. My six-figure blacks are very concerned about multiple-family, economically depressed people moving into rental homes and apartments, bringing in their bad behaviors."

    For example, "They still think it's OK to play basketball at 3 o'clock in the morning; it's OK to play football in the streets when there's a car coming; it's OK to walk down the streets three abreast. That's unacceptable in this city."

    Thomas has seen the desperation of the new arrivals. His officers, handling complaints, have found two or more families living in a single house, pooling their money for rent. They have "no food in the refrigerator and no furniture," Thomas says. "They can't afford the food. They can't afford the furniture." But they were eager to flee the gunfire of their old neighborhoods in Detroit.
    My general moral philosophy for black and white, American and non, is that if there's gunfire going on in the place where you live, and your first reaction is to flee rather than bring order or at least return fire, you will have no permanent place in the civilized world. But let's hear more sanctimony on the issue from the Cathedralists now:

    "We had a large number of people who have purchased homes from 2005 on, where the banks were very generous with their credit and they've allowed for people without documentation and income verification to borrow 95 to 100 percent of home values," Southfield Treasurer Irv Lowenberg says. "Many purchased homes when they had two jobs in the household and one of the jobs was lost.

    "As values began dropping, people were looking around and saying 'Why should I stay and pay my mortgage when other people aren't?' They decided to hand the keys back to the bank."

    Many of the foreclosed upon Southfield homes were going for $40,000 to $60,000. The median home value dropped from more than $190,000 to below $130,000 over the same period, according to Census figures.

    With so many empty houses available, rents also dipped by hundreds of dollars. Renters increased from about 13,100 in 2006 to 15,400 in 2009.

    The lure of low prices to Detroiters was obvious ó as was the likelihood that their arrival would not be without issues.

    "Blacks, like all Americans, want good schools and a safe community, and they can find that in the suburbs," says Richard Schragger, who teaches local government and urban law at the University of Virginia.

    Now, suburbs closest to big cities are "bedeviled" by the same problems that helped spur urban flight decades ago, Schragger adds. "And you're seeing further flight out. Rising crime levels, some rising levels of disorder."

    These were the things that prompted Richard Twiggs to leave Detroit 23 years ago for the safety, quiet and peace of mind Southfield offered.

    "The reason suburbs are the way they are is because a certain element can't afford to live in your community," adds Twiggs, a 54-year-old printer. "If you have $300,000, $400,000, $500,000 homes you're relatively secure in the fact that (the homeowners) are people who can afford it.

    "But when you have this crash, people who normally couldn't afford to live in Southfield are moving in. When you have a house for $9,900 on the corner over there ó that just destroys my property."

    The pride that comes with home ownership and a large financial investment in the property is missing, says Clanton, who lives across the street from Twiggs on Stahelin, about a half-mile north of Detroit. Back yards are deep and mostly tree-shaded. Sidewalks are few.

    "I treasure what I bought," Clanton says. "I want to keep it, but I don't need somebody to come in and throw their garbage on mine. Why would they come and make our lives miserable because they don't care?"

    Though they acknowledge they would lose money by selling their current homes, Clanton and Twiggs are contemplating moving further north.

    Sheryll Cashin, who teaches constitutional law and race and American law at Georgetown University, says it would be a shame if black flight from the city set off black flight from the near suburbs.

    Some blacks just don't want to live near other blacks, she says: "There is classism within the black community. The foreclosure crisis may be accelerating it." But she says middle-class blacks, like middle-class whites, are also put off by behavior of impoverished blacks who "have developed their own culture, one that is very different from mainstream America."

    Those who contemplate fleeing have fallen into what Cashin calls the "black middle-class dilemma."
    Why the redundant modifiers? I'd have called it simply "the middle class dilemma" or "the respectable citizen's dilemma" myself.

    "You have a choice of whether you are willing to be around your people or go 180 degrees in the other direction," she says. "To the higher income black people, if you don't want to love and help your lower-income black brethren, why would you expect white people to? If you can't do it, no one in society can do it. You can try to flee or you can be part of the solution."
    Solutions, you say? Does this indicate that there is a Black Problem common to all cities? No, wait:

    Southfield officials say one solution to changing neighborhoods is blight enforcement, other ordinances and costly fines. The idea, said the police chief, Thomas, is not to chase people away, but to help them assimilate.

    Soon after Grace, the telephone company analyst, moved into his house, he was cited for parking a small trailer on the property and storing interior doors outside. These are things that would have drawn little notice in Detroit amid the crime and failing schools, he said.

    He paid $400 in fines, got rid of the doors and put the trailer in paid storage.

    Eugene Williams found a foreclosure steal in one of Southfield's many well-kempt and stable neighborhoods. Williams, like Grace, wanted to get away from Detroit.

    "The kids are running around without any control," says Williams, a 56-year-old auto plant worker. "They walk down the middle of the street and block traffic. There was gunfire at night. It was a common thing to hear gunfire."

    But the transition to life in the suburbs hasn't been easy. As he was making improvements indoors, Southfield ordinance officials were writing citations outside. He was fined $200 for noxious weeds because the grass was too high and dandelions covered much of the front lawn.
    Going back to Sailer, I'm not sure that the soft tyranny of the Homeowner's association can really compete with the well-oiled gentrification machines in the big city:

    Why are the New York and Washington media so obsessed over matters of local governance in tiny Ferguson, MO? For example, the latest evolution of national media thinking on the Lessons to Be Learned from the Michael Brown crime spree shooting of an unarmed teen is that the Big Issue is that other half-pint municipalities outside of the city of St. Louis give out a lot of tickets to poor blacks, who often donít show up to pay them, and then get in serious trouble.

    Some of this is no doubt classic speed trap behavior aimed at exploiting outsiders, while some of it is quality of life enforcement aimed at getting residents, especially newcomers, to behave better and not ruin property values....

    ...In recent decades, the two gentrifying media capitals have been successfully driving out American-born blacks. Theyíve been prodding African-Americans to leave with things like stop and frisk in NYC.

    White people in New York and Washington thus want to grease the skids under African-Americans to make it as easy as possible for them to leave valuable urban land and head for dumpy suburbs like Ferguson. These kind of ticky-tacky citations that suburbs use to keep from turning into slums might discourage some urban blacks from moving out of gentrifiable inner city, so they must be demonized in the national press.

    As Iíve mentioned before, underclass blacks are a giant hot potato that practically every municipality wants to hand off to somebody else. I donít think there is any single best solution: there is just always going to be a lot of arguing and politicking over this. My one moral suggestion is that these discussions be honest and open about what everybody is up to. Iím particularly disgusted when the people holding the Megaphone in rapidly gentrifying New York and Washington get to use their media monopoly to demonize random nowheresvilles like Ferguson, and distract from their own efforts to drive out poor blacks to those nowheresvilles.
    Sorry, Steve, you can't throw the word 'solution' around, start talking about wandering undesirables, and think that people in New York and Washington are going to simply tell the honest truth about it. Fortunately, the Internet lets us put two and two together beyond the political spats of the day and come to a more reasoned and traditionally effective conclusion for what to do about such people.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Epoetker View Post


    Sorry, Steve, you can't throw the word 'solution' around, start talking about wandering undesirables, and think that people in New York and Washington are going to simply tell the honest truth about it. Fortunately, the Internet lets us put two and two together beyond the political spats of the day and come to a more reasoned and traditionally effective conclusion for what to do about such people.
    So... What are you suggesting? That "such people" be "round[ed] up ...and settle[ed]" elsewhere, maybe like on a Reservation? Ask your Native American neighbor how that worked out. How about we put them on the local police force? Or do we just "obliterate" them? That's what you seem to be advocating by your last link. Seriously? Genocide (and that's what it is, even if in a limited sense) is a "more reasoned..conclusion"?

    Oh. Wait a minute. this is Epo.

    Never mind.
    Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside a dog, it's too dark to read. -- Groucho Marx

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by moreta View Post
      So... What are you suggesting? That "such people" be "round[ed] up ...and settle[ed]" elsewhere, maybe like on a Reservation?
      In Epo's link the Emishi were sent back to their homeland so in this case I guess he's proposing that ghetto blacks be resettled to Africa. Something like this actually was done before, with Liberia, and the descendants of slaves just made themselves nobility and enslaved the locals, who eventually rebelled and beheaded them (or something, Liberian history isn't exactly something I've committed to memory in detail). These days Liberia is a machete rape cannibal paradise.

      Or do we just "obliterate" them? That's what you seem to be advocating by your last link.
      I don't think anyone* wants to invade Africa again considering how that ended last time around.


      *well, actually I believe China is busy depredating it these days so I should probably limit my comments to westerners.
      "As for my people, children are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people, they which lead thee cause thee to err, and destroy the way of thy paths." Isaiah 3:12

      There is no such thing as innocence, only degrees of guilt.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by moreta View Post
        So... What are you suggesting? That "such people" be "round[ed] up ...and settle[ed]" elsewhere, maybe like on a Reservation? Ask your Native American neighbor how that worked out.
        Rather well, I must admit. Though the natives themselves seem to be rather averse to having black people join their own reservations after a few centuries of organization and improvement.

        How about we put them on the local police force?
        Ask Ann Coulter how that worked out.

        Or do we just "obliterate" them? That's what you seem to be advocating by your last link. Seriously? Genocide (and that's what it is, even if in a limited sense) is a "more reasoned..conclusion"?
        Most certainly in a great many cases. No philosophy of genocide means no effective means for dealing with those who flout the law as a community rather than individuals. A thief is a criminal, a den of thieves is a sanctuary. That community becomes the ultimate safe zone no matter how bad your behavior, and provides motivation and instruction for others to flout the law as you do. Destroy the offending community and the illusion is shattered for all to see, both now and a good way into the future.

        Comment

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