Foreclosure Crisis: Class Is Becoming a Growing Issue in Black Communities

Apparently, middle-class blacks don't want to live next door to blacks from the ghetto.

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bank20owned
Bank-owned properties wreak havoc in some neighborhoods.

MSNBC is reporting that foreclosures are affecting the demographics of neighborhoods, making class more of an issue. Black neighborhoods are not immune to this growing divide. The article highlights Southfield, Mich., a suburb of Detroit in which some former members of ghetto communities have bought foreclosures in middle-class neighborhoods. The new residents say that current residents "look down" on them and aren't welcoming. Middle-class neighbors say it's not the people, but the behavior. They highlight an increased amount of trash on the streets, adults and children hanging out on the street at all times of night and a disregard for others' property.

Some blacks just don't want to live near other blacks. Sheryll Cashin, who teaches constitutional law and race and American law at Georgetown University, says, "There is classism within the black community. The foreclosure crisis may be accelerating it." Cashin adds, "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.' "

Classism has always been an issue in this country, and the black community isn't immune to it. Foreclosures and the increasing cost of living in urban cities is driving lower-class blacks to the suburbs, with or without foreclosures. Blacks of all different classes are going to have to learn to get along and to focus on the commonalities as opposed to the differences. Instead of allowing this phenomenon to further divide the black community, perhaps we should see it as an opportunity to come together.

Read more at MSNBC.

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