Segregation, integration, gentrification

I have a column at the Washington Post:

The kind of cognitive dissonance that allows someone to decry segregation while they wish to “reverse” the process of integration makes it impossible to articulate a real vision for what a just city might look like….

When we talk about racial change in Brooklyn or Washington, D.C., without acknowledging the larger context – the fact that for every black or Hispanic neighborhood seeing an influx of whites, there are 10 more that are just as segregated as they were 30 years ago – we’re missing what remains the fundamental inequality of American cities. What to do about the power and resource inequalities that both created and are sustained by segregation remains the fundamental challenge.

NB: Headlines are the bane of my existence.

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2 thoughts on “Segregation, integration, gentrification

  1. Congrats on getting an article in the WaPo.

    You bring up a point most people don’t get in their discussion (re the woman on the black middle class), which is that people in the same economic/social strata may have very different ways they want to do things.

    Take for example my job, as an engineer at the water department. My coworkers make the same amount of money as I do. Our jobs are the same, so the prestige is roughly the same (well, close anyway- my black coworker’s friends see the job as more prestigious then say my inlaw’s family might, who view it as a gov’t job). However, when we compare notes. about where we want to live, the cost of the northside doesn’t bug me at all. On the other hand, things that they consider good purchases seem wasteful to me. Obviously, both of us are maximizing our utility, and are most likely happier as a result of having the options.

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