Monday, April 17, 2006

Building segregation in 2006

Kenneth Harney writes up a two-year study by the federal government on the actions of real estate agents.

The study sent two teams to each realtor, one Caucasian American and one either Latina/o or African American and then documented the results.

In total, they tested 73 realtors in a dozen metropolitan areas. The minority testers were given better financial qualifications than their white counterparts.

The tests found that white shoppers were steered toward nearly exclusively white neighborhoods, while minority candidates were steered to predominantly minority neighborhoods. This steering took place at an 87 percent clip!

They found that the white testers were on the whole given much better service--shown more houses, while the minority testers were often told to "look in the newspaper or on the internet."

Minority testers were often forced to provide financial information before they would even be shown any homes, while white testers were given incentives and discounts on their closing costs or lower loan rates.

Even at 10%, steering would have a noticeable effect on creating segregation. We are talking about 87%--nearly every single agency was guilty of the practice.

Owning their own home is a major portion of most Americans' life dreams. Should we take pride in the fact that people are having their dreams shrunk by the people they depend on to lead them on this dream simply because of the color of their skin?

This is not a case of white racism--I'd be very surprised if all of the agents were white. It's a case of institutional racism that restricts everyone's freedom--minorities moreso than others, but whites were being steered away from their dream homes as well in order to reinforce the segregated society.

So what are you going to do about it? When you buy your house are you just going to take this? Are you going to support this system of racism? Or are you going to research and support the 13% of realtors who are not engaged in this despicable practice?


Blogger Matthew said...

How unfortunate, because it's so true. Where do we think the phrase "There goes the neighborhood" comes from?

When I used to live in Bloomington-Normal, I used to hear countless stories about how realtors tried to steer people certain ways. In those cases, it wasn't so much racism but classism.

The older, interior part of the community - which had an ok amount of nice, albeit older housing stock - was often shunned by realtors. They instead would show prospective buyers the newer homes on the east and west side of town.

This happened mostly when it involved the well-off employees of the major employer there. I'd be curious to know how the lower-income folks were treated, and which neighborhoods they were shown.

Good post, Xian. This is something we all need to be aware of, and to keep in mind.

11:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Silly Chinese BOY. At least those silly ethnics get a house! If it were up to me, I would make sure that there wasn't a single homeless white child on the street. Rather than let some stupid 'pro racial-mixing' media pollute my race and call good hard working people of my blood 'white trash' (as is often done), I would given them decent housing.

When MY forefathers came to this land, they fought hard to make sure that this became one of the most prosperous nations on the planet. Now we're told that it's constitutional to given all our money to asians!

Here's my advice my silly asian intellectual, find a better job that constantly complaining about how racist america is. If it's so bad to live here, then perhaps China would be a better bet? Try it - you'll get the housing that you always wanted.

Pathetic blog Xian. Realtors should be congratulated for being patriotic Americans - with all these asians coming from abroad and all this terror that they import, why should you be entitled to anything?

My advice Xian - shut up about 'racism' and accept that we white American's are some of the kindest, civilised, egalitarian and most Christian people on Earth - in blinding contrast to any Asian state!

Still, if you don't like the housing and scenery - go back to where you came from! Asia's meant to be doing well economically - why put up with us 'degenerate' Americans yellow man?

Think next time you make such a pathetic blog as this - it sickens and instults most good americans

11:51 AM  

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