In addition to recent news that the wealth gap between whites and minorities has increased, recent Census data shows that wealthier minorities tend to live in poorer neighborhoods than poorer whites:
The average affluent black and Hispanic household — defined in the study as earning more than $75,000 a year — lives in a poorer neighborhood than the average lower-income non-Hispanic white household that makes less than $40,000 a year.
“Separate translates to unequal even for the most successful black and Hispanic minorities,” says sociologist John Logan, director of US2010 Project at Brown University, which studies trends in American society.
“Blacks are segregated and even affluent blacks are pretty segregated,” says Logan, who analyzed 2005-09 data for the nation’s 384 metropolitan areas. “African Americans who really succeeded live in neighborhoods where people around them have not succeeded to the same extent.”…
“White middle-class families have the option to live in a community that matches their own credentials,” Logan says. “If you’re African American and want to live with people like you in social class, you have to live in a community where you are in the minority.”
Residential segregation is very much alive, particularly in large cities in the Northeast and Midwest. For minorities, simply having a middle-class income does not guarantee living in a middle-class neighborhood that one might expect as part of the American Dream.
This reminds of the classic work American Apartheid (1993) that cited the idea that residential segregation is the “linchpin of American race relations.” Without people of different incomes and races and ethnicities living near and with each other, a host of other issues are difficult to address.
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