Social Question

LostInParadise's avatar

How racially mixed would your neighborhood have to be for you to move out?

Asked by LostInParadise (29303points) January 19th, 2015
27 responses
“Great Question” (5points)

On this Martin Luther King day, here is somthing to contemplate. I know that the civil rights movement in the U.S. did a lot of good and helped people to become more enlightened, but there is still considerabe segregation in this country. Check out some of these maps

How can this be? The economist Thomas Schelling created an interesting model that shows that even if you are willing to tolerate only ⅓ of your neighbors looking like you, the result is segregated neighborhoods. You can get to play with the model here

I am not proud to say this, but if my neighborhood was only ⅓ white, I might consider moving somewhere else, and I am sure that I am far from being alone on this. We have a long way to go before we get past racism. Maybe this model can get us to do some rethinking.

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ragingloli's avatar

As soon as the neonazi skinhead population is higher than 10.

Cruiser's avatar

Racial mixing would not be a reason for me to move….bigoted anti-semetic a$$hole weenies like my ex-next door neighbor Scott would give me reason to move and we did.

elbanditoroso's avatar

It’s not race – it’s education and social norms that would make me move out. Put it this way. At one point I lived next door to a white trash family. Trash all over the front yard, various cars in disarray and car parts all over the driveway. Guy drove a loud pickup truck and parked it on the grass, wife barefoot and pregnant. They were far far worse than the black family that lived down the block and kept a nice house and yard.

Race isn’t the factor.

[By the way, the white trash family apparently didn’t pay their rent – they were thrown out and all their stuff put on the street (and picked up by the trash people) – the landlord had to redo the entire place to make it liveable, but the next people who lived there were great.

keobooks's avatar

My neighborhood is very diverse. Many retired army officers live here and the military is very diverse. I’d say a little less than half of my neighbors are black and the neighbors are Hawaiian. We even had some Klingons living on the block for a while. (Seriously!) My neighborhood is awesome. We are sorely lacking in Asian families though. So if you are Asian and looking for somewhere to live, come on down!

marinelife's avatar

Our neighborhood is very diverse with blacks, latinos and whites happily mixing together. It is one reason why we chose to move here.

filmfann's avatar

I grew up in Oakland, which, at the time, was the most diverse city in the United States. It may still be.
I now live in a small mountain town, where everyone is White and Republican. Even the meth heads and pot growers, of which there are many.
I would prefer more diversity here, but it was a trade off to live so far away from civilization.

ucme's avatar

If it’s MLK day, then i’m slightly surprised we haven’t had a rash of questions along these lines…“I had a dream, what does it mean?”

LuckyGuy's avatar

Do you see the background behind this response. That is how “white” my neighborhood is.
There are two “black” families within about 1.5 – 2 miles or so living in one of the tracts but they are as white as all of us. We’re neighbors and will stick up for each other.
It is not the race, or color that would make me move. It is the socio-economic conditions, prevailing education, and safety of the neighborhood.

BhacSsylan's avatar

How mixed would it have to be to make me move out? That sounds profoundly backwards.

Strauss's avatar

I have a racially mixed family! Why would the racial mixture of my neighborhood determine if or when I would move out!? I’m here until I die.

SQUEEKY2's avatar

Race would have nothing to do with it, I wouldn’t care if we were the only white couple on the block,it would take how unsafe and at unease to consider moving.

dappled_leaves's avatar

What a bizarre question. I don’t think about this when choosing a place to live.

CWOTUS's avatar

I question the assumptions of the model. I think that if people are highly conscious of their proportionate racial representation in their neighborhood, then they’re pretty racist – whatever their race is. Furthermore, how do other races, aside from “black” and “white” fit into this? What about other ethnicities and cultures? For some people even to live among people of the same nominal skin color would be problematic. I’m wondering, for example, how comfortable some Irish folks would be to live in a primarily English neighborhood, or vice versa, or how comfortable a Puerto Rican might be living among Jamaicans and Dominicans, or Polish and Greek neighbors?

This silly model sets up a nonsensical notion that “only color matters” – when it really doesn’t – really . does . not . matter. – at all.

DominicY's avatar

Racial mixing wouldn’t make me move out, but if the neighborhood declined enough, then I would. Declined meaning: more robberies, vandalism, more neglected houses, etc. It just so happens that in the history of this country, neighborhoods and cities were often vacated by white people around mid-century and then they declined. But it was a socio-economic thing ultimately.

Strauss's avatar

@DominicY But it was a socio-economic thing ultimately.

“White fright flight” was certainly a socio-economic thing, but it was defined largely by redlining by mortgage banks and racial stereotyping by many white people.

ibstubro's avatar

I think it depends on the location and your upbringing.

From what I’ve seen of St. Louis, I would be very uncomfortable being less than half the majority.

From what I saw in Cleveland, Ohio, nobody really gave a crap what color their neighbor was. It was more socioeconomic class.

I’m from Missouri. I honestly didn’t realize that black and white strangers could interact without tension until fairly recently. Scoff if you like, that’s simply my life’s reality.

syz's avatar

My neighborhood is probably less than ⅓ white. I have no plans to move.

syz (35649points)“Great Answer” (2points)
LostInParadise's avatar

Thanks for your answers. Unfortunately, the jelly population is not representative of the world at large. All of our major cities are heavily segregated, and it did not come about by chance. There is segregation by both income and race, but racial segregation is greater. As the model shows, even a small amount of racism can get magnified in global population patterns, which means that people may not even be consciously aware of their motivations.

ibstubro's avatar

When I lived in St. Louis, I lived in Maplewood which was openly touted by the realtors as “the cheapest predominately white neighborhood” to live in. My knee-jerk was ‘Uh, okay, let’s look there.”

Safety was equated with ‘white’.

Strauss's avatar

@ibstubro Safety was equated with ‘white’.
Or possibly the realtors assumed that someone white would feel more comfortable in a “predominately white” neighborhood.

Blackberry's avatar

Nice title bait lol. Glad you’re not actually racist.

tinyfaery's avatar

Ew. I would never live in a place that was not ethnically diverse. I grew up in L.A. I would never feel comfortable around a bunch of white people. How boring and insular. I think that is what breeds racism and intolerance. When everybody is just like everyone else there is no way for people to experience other kinds of beliefs, traditions, food (the food alone is worth it). When people leave such an insular neighborhood they are going to distrust and fear those who are not just like them.

ibstubro's avatar

Oh, were you house hunting in St. Louis in the early 80’s, too, @Yetanotheruser?

BeenThereSaidThat's avatar

I already live in a racially mixed neighborhood. In New York most are. I would move if my actual next door neighbors were assholes. I lived in my house for 40 years and so far both of my neighbors on either side of me have lived in their homes for 60 and 30 years. so far so good…....

ibstubro's avatar

One chief appeal of my home is that I do not and can not have a neighbor in view. I have a secluded spot in a very public area.

Were I to search for housing in the city, I’d ask for diversity versus safety statistics. Literally I am that totally sincere guy at the grocery that asks, “What do you use that for?” I had a little road-trip today and found that the customer at Lucky’s Market had not had the vegetable torte before, so was not certain how she would heat it. The guy at Lucky’s deli underestimated the curry in the “Cauliflower Cracklins”. Gave direction to the woman at Pat’s Market on how to get to both Lucky’s Market and Trader Joe’s (over an hour away.)

LadyMarissa's avatar

At one point, my husband & I were the ONLY whites in our neighborhood. I found it NO different than living in all white neighborhood. I had great friends, met some wonderful people & still have some wonderful friends from those days!!!

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